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January 21, 2013

3D Printers Are Close To Changing The Ballgame

Ace has written quite often about how pervasive the liberal advocacy has become especially into non-political realms, and it's absolutely true. I stumbled on this article at Tech Crunch over the weekend that proves the point perfectly.

As the race – and it’s basically a race – to release as many 3D-printed gun parts as possible heats up, it’s never been harder for me to come down on the side of the “Freedom To Tinker” crowd. Last weekend Defense Distributed, a group dedicated to releasing plans for a 3D printed gun, posted a video and description of their 3D-printed AR-15 thirty-round magazine. The video, which is, unnecessarily, full of snarky vitriol, shows that, on some level, the 3D printed gun isn’t very far off. It also shows that the call for 3D printer legislation could soon overpower the call for freedom.

The problem with childish displays of firepower coupled with “How’s that national conversation going?” is that it proves that the folks who are doing this tinkering are less than responsible. They feel that this is a freedom of speech issue rather than a gun control issue. It’s abundantly clear that the lads at Defense Distributed are enjoying their newfound notoriety and, like a boy band on their first tour, they’re ready to trash some hotel rooms. The resulting shenanigans have convinced Congressman Steve Israel (D-NY) to call for the banning of undectable 3-D printed high-capacity magazines.

It's quite hysterical that a "defender of the freedom to tinker" would blame the tinkerers over the efforts of an authoritarian congressman to put limits on the technology. You can almost read where his "discretion" and "need to self-censor" commentary would have gone. It's also interesting that the line between exciting technological advancement and dangerous political exploitation just happens to match up perfectly with this preening sissy's delicate sensibilities.

I'd hate to send this guy scrambling to his nearest fainting couch, but we are rapidly approaching a time when these gun control laws are going to be almost impossible to enforce outside of public possession. The "undetectable plastic gun" is largely a James Bond fantasy. However, printable gun parts will be a reality very soon (and by "soon", I could mean "tomorrow"). These advancements, along with those in ceramics and composites, will make it much easier to produce a workable and reliable firearm in the future and the law will have a much harder time keeping up (the major challenges remain in small parts like pins and springs, and of course, barrels). It's also worth noting that we're crossing an important line in terms of affordability and access here. While 3D printers are relatively expensive now (roughly $3k base), as the technology advances, it will become accessible to the public. Your 50" flat-screen HDTV isn't $5000 anymore, for example. Just download a file off the internet, load it into your 3d printer, hit "print" and away you go.

Naturally, whenever a beta-male ninny whines about "snarky vitriol" of gun rights defenders, you know you have to click through. This led me to the guys behind Defense Distributed (@DefDist) who are releasing these 3D files to the public and allowing others to make improvements and changes. This is essentially the programming version of open source, which has been a fantastic avenue for project development and innovation. It seems like they're pretty damn close with the AR-15 mag files and the AK-47 isn't too far behind. They're having some difficulty with the AR-15 lower, which is seeing some extreme stresses in the rear part of the assembly near the buffer ring. They are making progress, however.

Truth be told, I thought he was a little over the top in the testing videos. That is, until I saw his appearance on Glenn Beck's program. He is not a guy that would really be easily pigeonholed into a left/right political philosophy. Definitely an interesting guy and very eloquent and knowledgable.

Patriot or dangerous? I'm siding with patriot. Check out the video below. You'll enjoy it.

digg this
posted by JohnE. at 05:00 PM

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