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3D Printers & Guns

While the 3-D printers at the Consumer Electronics Show were a big hit (see 3D Printers are Here!) there is already software available to make things that, well, might cause great unhappiness in this administration.

Recent events have the government representatives pushing for new bans on high capacity clips for weapons. But they might find their plans thwarted by new technology.

Forbes: Over the past weekend, Defense Distributed successfully 3D-printed and tested an ammunition magazine for an AR semi-automatic rifle, loading and firing 86 rounds from the 30-round clip.

That homemade chunk of curved plastic holds special significance: Between 1994 and 2004, so-called “high capacity magazines” capable of holding more than 10 bullets were banned from sale. And a new gun control bill proposed by California Senator Diane Feinstein would ban those larger ammo clips again. President Obama has also voiced support for the magazine restrictions.

The following video clip demonstrates a successful test of a 3D-printed plastic ammo magazine and provides links to a website where anyone can download the specs to make a 3D high capacity magazine clip.

Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson says he hopes the group’s recent work demonstrates the futility of that proposed ban in the age of cheap 3D printing.

Forbes: “This isn’t 1994. The Internet happened since the last assault weapons ban. This is a fledgling tech, but look what we’re able to do. We printed that magazine out.”

Defense Distributed has already gotten the attention of the government. Its rented printer was seized and founders have been mentioned by Congressmen when calling for a renewal of the Undetectable Firearms Act.

But there can be no doubt the technology exists to create the high capacity ammo clips and it’s anticipated that soon there will be software to make printable guns.


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About Teresa Wendt

A stay at home mom who runs a household, manages the finances, cares for a young adult autistic son, and cooks from scratch. Traveling from Arizona to Alaska summer of 2013. Visit my blog at and follow along.