Defense Distributed has finally done it: They have created the world’s first fully 3D printed firearm. The only non-plastic parts are a screw, which you can pick up at any hardware store, and of course the bullet.
While this may be a revolutionary step in the world of gun rights, it may not make much of an impact in the world of shooting in general. This plastic gun has a long way to go before it matches the raw stopping power of a metal handgun. The gun can only be fired one time before needing a reload, the bullet is extremely tiny, and some assembly is required. The plastic gun is certainly neat, but diehard gun nuts will probably prefer reliable guns over these plastic toys.
Of course, it’s not the stopping power that makes these guns so game-changing – it’s that anybody with access to a 3D printer can now acquire a firearm. That includes sex offenders, people on the terrorist watch list, and felons. It also includes everyday citizens who simply want to arm themselves.
Gun rights supporters who don’t care about the tiny caliber or the complicated legal implications can print off one of these guns today. Defense Distributed has made the file available online for free. All anybody needs is a 3D printer, the files, and a lot of spare plastic – bullet and screw sold separately.
This breakthrough will undoubtedly shake the gun world. Gun control advocates will cringe at unregulated firearms that are available to virtually anyone. Even gun rights advocates have reason to be concerned – these guns could deliver a major blow to gun manufacturers. Gun lobbying institutions like the NRA receive donations from gun manufacturers, who might want to see these free plastic guns go the way of the dinosaur. These guns could create infighting within the gun rights movement as profit-driven companies compete with gun owners who don’t want to dish out big bucks for pricey metal firearms.
Source: Defense Distributed