Canada – -(Ammoland.com)- The successful firing of the world’s first plastic gun made with 3D printing technology, has brought immediate calls for a ban on so-called “undetectable weapons.”
The gun, called “The Liberator”, was made and developed in Austin, Texas by a non-profit organization called Defense Distributed, which claims its purpose is to “produce and publish information related to the 3D printing of firearms.”
The weapon was made with a 3D printer bought on eBay for just $8,000, and constructed by assembling 15 printed components made from ABS plastic. According to the BBC, which witnessed the weapon’s first test, only the 16th piece, the firing pin, is made from metal.
While Defense Distributed sees its guns as a way for people to defend themselves, at least one U.S. lawmaker wants the weapons to be made illegal. Sen. Charles Schumer claims the plastic design would make the weapons undetectable by airport scanners.
“Guns are made out of plastic, so they would not be detectable by a metal detector at any airport or sporting event,” Schumer told reporters. “Only metal part of the gun is the little firing pin and that is too small to be detected by metal detectors, for instance, when you go through an airport.” “A terrorist, someone who’s mentally ill, a spousal abuser, a felon can essentially open a gun factory in their garage,” Schumer added.
The weapon can fire a .380 handgun round, but Forbes, which was on hand for the firing, claimed a larger 5.7×28 rifle cartridge was tested, and blew apart The Liberator. 3D printing technology is seen as one future direction for manufacturing. Typically, it takes a digital representation of an object, and recreates it physically by laying down thin layers of material, usually plastics, until the digital file is literally printed in three dimensions. The object could be an iPhone case, a simple tool, a high-capacity magazine, or if Defense Distributed has its way, all the parts for a single-use firearm…
Tony Bernardo, the acting director or the Canadian Shooting Sports Association, said the ability to produce printable firearms won’t be a problem for Canadians.
“It’s a total non-issue,” Bernardo said. “People have been making firearms by hand for 400 years. Many of the firearms that were used in World War I were produced in factories that didn’t even have electricity.”
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