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Thread: DIY Firearms Makers Are Already Replicating And Remixing The 3D-Printed Gun

  1. #1

    DIY Firearms Makers Are Already Replicating And Remixing The 3D-Printed Gun

    DIY Firearms Makers Are Already Replicating And Remixing The 3D-Printed Gun
    Andy Greenberg
    5/14/2013 @ 11:02AM

    BTW, in case you were wondering; yes, there will be a 3D printer at Porcfest. Come check it out.

    A photo of a 3D-printed Liberator pistol posted on Twitter by the New Hampshire group the Free State Project.

    Just a week after the release of blueprints for the world’s first fully 3D-printable gun, the firearm known as the Liberator is already reproducing–and evolving.

    Photos floating around Twitter and sent to me by readers show the DIY weapon created by the high-tech gunsmithing group Defense Distributed beginning to fulfill its promise: To allow anyone to create a handgun at home with an Internet connection and a 3D printer, potentially circumventing all gun control laws. And the State Department’s legal move late last week to remove those blueprints from Defense Distributed’s website,, may have only made the group’s fans more eager to print their own plastic gun in defiance of the government’s takedown.

    A version of the gun printed by Maryland software engineer Travis Lerol with a printed barrel. He says he's also experimenting with metal-reinforced and epoxy-cast barrels as well as different calibers of ammunition. (Click to enlarge.)

    Travis Lerol, a 30-year-old former military software engineer in Glen Burnie, Maryland, printed his Liberator (shown at right) within days of its appearing online. Unlike the original printed gun, he says he’s altered his to have a rifled barrel, a move designed to avoid the National Firearms Act, which regulates improvised and altered weapons and has a provision covering “smooth-bored” pistols. He’s also built another version of the barrel for .22 ammunition that uses a metal insert for reinforcement, instead of the entirely-plastic barrel for .380 rounds used in Defense Distributed’s original. And he’s cast versions of the Liberator’s barrel in epoxy that take .380 and .45 ammunition, a design he argues will be more durable than the pure ABS plastic Defense Distributed tested.

    “When the Liberator came out, I was pretty curious and also surprised that the barrel hadn’t exploded when they fired it,” says Lerol. “I want to progress it from the entry level it’s at now to something more advanced, and then put that information back up to share.”

    A Liberator printed on a $1,725 Lulzbot 3D printer. (Click to enlarge.)

    Another DIY gunsmith and engineer, who asked that I call him only “Joe” to protect his anonymity, printed his version of the Liberator (shown at right) over the last weekend on a $1,725 Lulzbot AO-101, a 3D-printer that costs a small fraction of the industrial Stratasys Dimension SST printer that Defense Distributed bought for $8,000 secondhand and used to create its prototype. Joe, who also rifled and extended the gun’s barrel, added metal hardware to hold his gun together rather than the plastic printed pins in the original.

    He hasn’t tested his more affordable version of the weapon yet, but he says he’s confident it can fire a .380 round just as well as the gun Defense Distributed printed on its higher-end printer. “I’m an avid gunsmith, and I’m about one hundred percent sure it’s going to work,” he says.
    Read the other half of the article. ->
    Lifetime member of more than 1 national gun organization and the New Hampshire Liberty Alliance. Part of Young Americans for Liberty and Campaign for Liberty. Free State Project participant and multi-year Free Talk Live AMPlifier.

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    Now the marketplace of ideas is gonna go to town on this technology and improve it in innumerable ways.

    Exciting times!
    "When it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system's game. The establishment will irritate you - pull your beard, flick your face - to make you fight, because once they've got you violent then they know how to handle you. The only thing they don't know how to handle is non-violence and humor. "

    ---John Lennon



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