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The good news: modern technology has advanced to a point where someone can use a 3 D printer and make something out of plastic. The bad news: modern technology has advanced to a point where someone can sue a 3 D printer and make a gun out of plastic, which could pose a security threat a places like airport.

A Texas company is set to release blueprints for making a plastic gun with a 3-D printer — a development Sen. Chuck Schumer called “stomach-churning” Sunday.

Defense Distributed, a collective of gun access advocates headed by self-described “free-market anarchist” Cody Wilson, has announced it made such an untraceable gun with the new plastic-making technology. The nonprofit Texas group intends to post blueprints for “The Liberator” (pictured) online this week.

The Liberator may look like a toy, but “this gun can fire regular bullets,” Schumer said, calling for legislation outlawing the technology’s weapons potential.

The bill was drafted by Rep. Steve Israel (D-L.I.).

Will the NRA allow a law like that? They call the (pardon the expression,,) shots in Congress. Would any law like that be a concern because it restricts freedom on guns? Or will this be on the NRA won’t stridently oppose, since it involves guns people make out of plastic which could compete with the gun industry and mean less revenue for gun companies?

“Security checkpoints, background checks and gun regulations will do little good if criminals can print their own plastic firearms at home and bring those firearms through metal detectors with no one the wiser,” Israel said in a statement.

To Schumer, the ramifications of make-your-own untraceable and undetectable weapons are “stomach-churning.”

“Now anyone, a terrorist, someone who is mentally ill, a spousal abuser, a felon, can essentially open a gun factory in their garage,” Schumer said. “It must be stopped.”

According to the New York Daily News, its an easy process: you simply buy a printer for $1,000 print out the pieces, get the blueprint on how to assemble it, and put it together.

Providing security that works is harder. Especially with plastic guns.

FOOTNOTE: It is fascinating, though — and you can anticipate some people trying to make a plastic gun because it’s so fascinating.

JOE GANDELMAN, Editor-In-Chief
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adelinesdad
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adelinesdad
3 years 4 months ago
Gun advocates claim that gun control laws don’t work because criminals don’t obey them. They miss the point that by making something illegal, you don’t just criminalize it but also make it harder to do if it involves cooperation from others, which acquiring a gun usually does. In this case, however, their point stands. Unless 3D printers themselves are made illegal, how exactly do you stop a criminal from doing this? By blocking the websites that distribute the blueprint? Good luck with that. I think technology will always be one step ahead of security efforts, in a free society. Even… Read more »
Rambie
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Rambie
3 years 4 months ago

Throwing out FUD again? The law they want to renew is the 1988 “Non-detectable weapons” law that makes it illegal to produce weapons that can not be detected in a metal detector. They do not want to outlaw 3D printers nor the CAD aka “blueprint” files to make 3D printed guns.

If the litmus test to passing a law is, “Well, criminals won’t follow the law anyway!” then we’ve become a very sad society indeed.

JIM SATTERFIELD
Member
3 years 4 months ago

Of course the person behind the project is a law student who apparently claims to be part of the “Liberty Movement” and approves of anarchists. Why do I think of 1914?

ordinarysparrow
Guest
ordinarysparrow
3 years 4 months ago

Walmart is so going to love this…
Mass market of cheap guns by your neighborhood supplier…

zephyr
Guest
zephyr
3 years 4 months ago

I think technology will always be one step ahead of security efforts

That goes to the human propensity to reach beyond our grasp. Cleverness and intelligence aren’t the same thing imo. As for the 3D printed gun and the motive behind it? I can’t even begin to describe how backward and wrong this feels. The rest of the world must think we are insane – probably beginning with Canada and picking up steam fast.

adelinesdad
Guest
adelinesdad
3 years 4 months ago
Rambie, I didn’t say that we shouldn’t have a law against undetectable weapons. I’m only questioning their effectiveness and whether our focus should be on other efforts. I suppose the law would be useful in one-off cases where law enforcement becomes aware of someone possessing the prohibited item, in which case they can intervene before the person even attempts to enter a secure area. However, my point is that this isn’t likely to be much of a deterrent given that the item is undetectable, by definition. (As an aside, the nydailnews link implies that these items, if made entirely of… Read more »
SteveK
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SteveK
3 years 4 months ago

I wasn’t going to comment in this thread, I don’t like guns of any style but a friend asked what good would a plastic gun be without bullets…

He had a good point because unless you’re shooting plastic bullets you are still not going to get through security.

ShannonLeee
Guest
ShannonLeee
3 years 4 months ago
We do bioprinting at my institute. The technology is the future of medicine and general production imho. Printing a gun, on a plane, would not exactly be an unnoticeable process. Getting a printer through security would also be an interesting task. The bigger problem is the use of these gun in every day life. An untraceable gun that can be easily destroyed is not good for law enforcement. Although I do like the fact that gun manufactures will end up losing on this one. Think about it… why would I buy a gun when my friend down the street can… Read more »
dduck
Guest
dduck
3 years 4 months ago

IMHO, this is an overblown problem. Terrorists have moved on to bombs and the average person/crook can get a real gun cheaply by stealing it or buying a cheap model. Either way the all metal gun with multiple rounds will be around for a long time.

adelinesdad
Guest
adelinesdad
3 years 4 months ago
SK, I figure it’s much easier to smuggle a bullet into a secure area than a gun. But your point stands. SL, the issue is that the gun can be made out of plastic and apparently therefore undetectable. I gather that gun manufacturers are prohibited from doing that. You don’t need to smuggle a printer on board. dduck, the issue here isn’t access to guns but access to undetectable guns. I agree with you that this gun seems much inferior in many ways to manufactured guns which I don’t think will see a dent, which underscores the point that this… Read more »
dduck
Guest
dduck
3 years 4 months ago

There will be a new technology (big walk-through machine) and/or plastic-sniffing dogs to further bloat Homeland Security.

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