Defense Distributed, the company making The Liberator 3D printed gun, released a YouTube video today demonstrating its first test firing of the weapon in Austin.
With a dramatic orchestral composition as background music, the white-resin weapon looks more like a flare gun than a modern handgun. It was tested with a single shot. The only metal component of the gun was its firing pin.
Defense Distributed, which makes The Liberator 3D printed gun, released this video demonstrating the first test firing of the weapon.
Cody Wilson, the 25-year-old University of Texas law student who founded Defense Distributed, told the BBC that he understands his printed gun may be used to hurt people, but said: "I don't think that's a reason to not do it - or a reason not to put it out there."
Defense Distributed's website makes no bones about its goals: "To defend the civil liberty of popular access to arms as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and affirmed by the United States Supreme Court, through facilitating global access to, and the collaborative production of, information and knowledge related to the 3D printing of arms; and to publish and distribute, at no cost to the public, such information and knowledge in promotion of the public interest."
Defense Distributed plans to publish the blueprints for making the printable gun online.
Staples plans to begin selling 3D printers next month. So, it's conceivable that people could begin making their own printable guns this year.
Along with The Liberator, Defense Distributed has also printed a 30-round magazine and the lower receiver for an AR-15 assault rifle, the semi-automatic civilian model of the U.S. military's M16 rifle.
Lucas Mearian covers storage, disaster recovery and business continuity, financial services infrastructure and health care IT for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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