3D printed guns just cleared a major legal hurdle

How do it know?

There has long been a federal loophole for individuals making firearms for personal use (1934 National Firearms Act and 1968 Gun Control Act). And I suspected from the beginning that this 3D printing thing would fit into that loophole.

If you weren’t aware of the loophole:

  1. Per federal law, an individual building a firearm for personal use is not required to mark it with a serial number.
  2. Some states may have more restrictive regulations. Example California AB 857 (2016) requires that you must first apply to the California DOJ for a serial number (fee required), and then you can begin construction and must apply the DOJ provided serial number.
  3. Firearms build for personal use are not transferable. It is my understanding that they basically they need to be destroyed on your death.

I’m curious; can you explain to me why I shouldn’t?

You can PM me if you don’t want your post subject to the enfilades of the peanut gallery :wink:


Look at your cheerful interaction with me. So engaging. It’s the nicest jaqing off I’ve seen all week.

“The study found a gun is 18 times more likely to be used in an attempted or completed suicide, homicide or assault than it is for self-defense. But some of these homicides may involve strangers and, therefore, it would not be entirely accurate to say this study supports Soglin’s claim about the danger to known victims.”

From - http://www.politifact.com/wisconsin/statements/2018/jul/12/paul-soglin/gubernatorial-candidate-paul-soglins-claim-about-g/
and - http://iprce.emory.edu/

Or are you planning to use it for something other than self defense?


I wasn’t planning on using a gun for anything. I was just curious as to how a person who doesn’t know me or my circumstances could make a blanket statement of what I should or should not possess.

The mental processes justifying prior restraint intrigue me; is it a received truth, like belief in the virgin birth of Christ, requiring faith but no reasoning? Or could it be valid reasoning based on extension of knowledge to which I am not privy? Or virtue signalling to the larger tribe, a way of gaining acceptance and love from admirable strangers? Something else entirely? There has to be some motive that leads a person to say such a thing, doesn’t there? I am very curious about that process.


I suspect that there are two issues at play:

The state contended that this was an ITAR violation: I doubt that anyone focused on the spirit of ITAR really much cared, gcode for relatively low end small arms(in some cases only the bits that happen to be domestically controlled in the US) is pretty weak sauce by the standards of what those export regulations are interested in; but if the “It’s code, bro!” argument works in the general case it could prove to be a substantial:

I’d imagine that, say, the next Toshiba-Kongsberg incident will probably involve some exports that are mostly just code; differing substantially in sophistication and novelty/scarcity; but not so much in form; and the feds would be unhappy if selling that to assorted 3rd parties weren’t even theoretically illegal.

Domestically, and for tech that is basically of zero interest from the perspective of people who already stamp out small arms in industrial quantities; I imagine that, while no sane person suspects that catching the files ahead of time would be viable; many people have quite solid reasons to suspect that finding them during searches triggered by other criminal or suspected-criminal activity will be a great deal easier; and if they are illegal they’d make a handy sentence enhancement option.


For reference, people in the homebrew firearm forums have been making it something of a challenge to build AR pattern lowers out of increasingly silly materials. One person laminated a bunch of nylon cutting boards together and carved out a lower using the same set of tools that a hobbyist wood shop might have. Still another made one out of actual wood. (Cavalry Arms, IIRC, got in serious hot water over their polymer lowers for some reason- I never heard what happened in that case.)

The reason for that is that the lower receiver of an AR is not the part that contains the pressure as the rifle fires- that’s all in the upper receiver, which (ironically) the BATFE does not consider the firearm. (that distinction belongs to the lower, as it holds the trigger assembly, magazine well, and grip.)

If I wanted to make an AK pattern rifle, those are even more simple, and I can buy the bulk of the materials needed for the receiver at a big box store, and the tools at the local hazard fraught.


Oh, and if I’m not already on certain watchlists, I sure as hell am now. :smiley:

(disclaimer: I had a collector’s Federal Firearm License some years back; I have some slighly obscure information about the firearm laws of the US.)

Oh. Well, guns = bad. No guns = good. Therefore you should NOT possess guns.
And besides, we don’t want you shooting yourself or someone else while cleaning said firearm.:v:


Do you have links to the actual study? I would like to see how the 18 times ratio was reached. The information I can find does not support that number.

Based on the CDC stating that guns were used defensively within the home 498,000 times in 1994 (The last time the CDC performed such a determination with regards to defensive gun use), the National Institute of Justice stating that 467,321 people were the victim of crimes committed with a firearm in 2011 (to be fair, in 1994, that number was 1,568,176) does not support the 18:1 ratio.

Given that the CDC include only defensive uses in the home, and none outside the home, even a 3:1 ratio is dubious at best. Those numbers don’t consider that defensive gun use is notoriously underreported either.

1 Like




The harmful effects of Science-fiction on children…


Great read on ghost guns and why just because you can in theory “3d print a gun” doesn’t make it a good idea.


I’m interested how the NRA weighs in. They are generally against any kind of regulation but they are a puppet group of the gun industry. My guess is they will just play quiet or find some way to do their masters bidding. That’s probably what the “ghost” gun rhetoric is.


I don’t understand the basis of the question.

IS “the state” trying to ‘stop’ this from getting out into the world? They sure seem to be trying to criminalize possession of the file (which isn’t going to fly under the constitution, as it’s not secret) as well as criminalizing the behavior of utilizing them to make guns, in the US, and without being an appropriately licensed gunsmith (which will fly under the constitution, and is already illegal)


That’s not the point, love. Do you really want every idiot teen, every aggravated grandma, dumbfuck vigilate, hillbilly hoodlum, and ballbusting bro to be carrying?

Guns make violence too easy. It’s all too eady to escalate a confrontation into a live-action Rambo.

The answer is not to make violence cheap, easy, and common. It’s to make lethal violence rare, difficult, and expensive.

America: everybody should have a gun
Also america: no free healthcare, fuck you


It’s useless if you can’t “print” your own novichok.

For self defense and target practice.


rather than nitpick and or cherry pick data from disperate studies with differing goals, would you support A CDC study on the public health impacts of firearms in america. Not ( R). Not (D).


Would you support that? Don’t want to hear your caveats, do you think the data could/should be collected by a dispassionate party, the one we already agree to fund to study such things, other than when congress ties their hands behind their backs and bans them from doing so, as is now the case, for that one purpose?

It’s a yes or no question. I am not here to wrestle.