When it comes to guns, 3-D printing is usually seen as a harbinger of evil, not good. Last year, a plan to build open-source blueprints for a working 3-D printed firearm drew fierce criticism in a country plagued by shooting deaths.
But at least one group is banking on 3-D printing being an answer to, rather than a source of, America's gun-safety problems. Following President Obama's announcement yesterday asking for more private investment into gun safety technology, 3Dlt, a "3-D template marketplace," has launched a crowd-funded innovation challenge to develop 3-D printed products that improve gun safety.
The Cincinnati-based startup 3Dlt is a platform for buying and selling 3-D printer templates, but it also envisions itself as a social innovator that can help improve the world, one 3-D printed object at a time. Using the crowd-funding platform Indiegogo, the startup launched its first big campaign yesterday: "Innovation Challenge: Improving Firearm Safety."
With a $1,000 minimum goal to reach before March 18, 3Dlt will use the proceeds of its fundraising campaign to launch an innovation contest this spring. Designers will submit their ideas, which will be vetted by a team of firearms experts and later voted on by the general public. In June, the winning teams will receive a certain percentage of the total money raised, and their designs will be sold on 3Dlt.com, which is still in beta.
3Dlt tries to make it clear that their motivations aren't political, declaring "WE ARE NOT TAKING A STANCE ON GUN OWNERSHIP."
"Whether you support 2nd Amendment rights or think tougher gun legislation is the answer, we can all agree that gun safety is vitally important," the project summary notes. Gun safety technologies, such as "smart guns" that only allow an authorized shooter to fire them, are relatively unavailable on the commercial market despite years of research and development poured into them since the late 90s.
As Robert Spitzer--a professor at SUNY Cortland and author of four books on control--told The New York Times last week, "The gun industry has no interest in making smart-guns. There is no incentive for them." Gun manufacturers are concerned with liability, and gun advocates worry that technology would fail in a life-or-death situation.
However, 3Dlt's challenge seems to be more about creating better gun accessories than smarter guns. 3Dlt is not looking for gun designs or gun enhancements, according to the Indiegogo description. The contest info instead suggests that gun locks, safety accessories and ammunition storage could all be designed to be 3-D printed and mass-produced.
The campaign hasn't gotten many funders yet, but if the contest does materialize--and generates genuinely innovative ideas--safer firearms could be a click closer.
"improve gun safety"
Solution: 3D print a gun.
Because there is nothing better than a gun in your hand when confronted with somebody shooting at you.
Solution 2.0: 3D print a tank.
Because there is nothing better than riding in a tank when confronted with somebody shooting at you.
How about a template for some high tech body armor too. Question: Can you print ammo? No? I guess that would be the control would it not.
I think I'm missing something. When people print this technology at home, they are the ones that will decide which technology will be included in the design. This is just BS. people will be able to print cartridges with 30 bullets even if nobody was allowed to buy them. Perhaps it will be only be possible to proof that he printed them himself instead of others. This is just a BS initiative to prevent that it will be forbidden to print a next generation printed guns. At this moment you cannot print every part well on a 3D printer, but this is just a matter of time.
I'm also pesimmistic that this development can be stopped.
Plastic are becomming better and 3D printing techniques are becomming better and even without progress, you will only need to buy a metal part which can withstand the heat where it now brakes down. All the laws are too little too late.
Guns, tools of harm and death.
ikwilgeen, yes, you are missing the OBVIOUS. Try 'printing' gunpowder or a primer.
If the voters are to be heard and considered in the up and coming laws, maybe they should pay attention to the SURGE of GUN SALES!
I do believe in the right to bear arms, by the way. And I also want the public to be safe by the gun management laws. This is a complicated topic and to be respected for many different perspectives.
I am just saying there is a large source of citizens ensuring they will own their guns, via the surge of gun sales. People are putting their hard earn dollars, where they believe to have the right to own guns.
And speaking of the surge of gun sales, I wonder what percentage of these people know how to safely handle/store a firearm.
I think guns are as safe as gun owners want them to get. If this group really wants to decrease accidental shootings, I think public awareness campaigns and firearm safety training are the route to go.
Also, there are many groups that already give out free cable style gun locks. Until everyone has a 3D printers in their home, there are better ways to distribute gun safety products. 3Dlt is just another group trying to cash in on a crisis.
You comment about having a gun in your hand worked real well for the 6 year olds in the elementary school. I know lets give any single person age 4 and up throughout the entire country a gun they HAVE to cary on them at all time so they can protect themselves.
I think there is a good solution that does not involve taking guns out of the hands of people. That's never going to happen. I think the solution is to change the amunition available for use. Let's change all non-hunting amo to less lethal rubersized bullets. If you are getting shot at by rubber bullets, you aren't going to stick around. Let's further that and place pockets of stinging poison (from lets say jelly fish, or paralyzing poision from puffer fish) and make getting stung even worse then be stings.
The solution is not changing guns but changing the amo.
democedes, why would a 3D template website conduct firearm training? That doesn't seem to make any sense. And if cable style gun locks were massively successful, we wouldn't even be having this conversation. I suggest you do some research on your own.
I don't believe he was suggesting this company offer training, only that this influx of new firearms owners are likely inadequately trained. I hadn't thought about this previously, but it is a very good point. Though I'm glad to see so many people interested in responsible firearm ownership (I hope that is how they view it), it is VERY important that these new owners understand the responsibility of firearm ownership and seek out the appropriate level of training.
Well if you want to go strait for the strawman; be my guest.
My proposal is that those teachers should have been armed. Volentarily, not manditory. But three other people in the building shooting back probably could've reduced the body count. They would certainly have drawn the man's attention away from the kids. And I'd rather read about a heroicly dead teacher than another dead child.
Now, the absurdity you're trying to assign to me is the idea of arming each one of those kids - which is absurd because of the fear of them being innacurate, irresponsible and accidentally shooting other people in the process etc.
While that's true in the general case... seeing as how 26 kids were all killed anyway, it seems far more likely that the body count would have been reduced with everyone of those kids armed. Because with 26 kids shooting back; someone would've killed the gunman.
Am I advocating arming children? Not 6 year olds. I was a good shot at 6, but I still wouldn't trust my 6year-old self with a gun in public. But in this scenario, even that absurdity would've led to a better outcome.
cwanless, your profile is 2 hours 56 min old.
CLM85, your profile is 2 hours 37 min old.
My guess, you’re the same person and just arguing for the sake of arguing.
"cartridges with 30 bullets"
rubber -"less lethal" bullets
There is a good demonstration of why gun control laws never make any sense. I am surprised that no one has recommended coating guns with fairy dust as a solution.
Maybe not complete cartridges but I could see a use if you could print the bullet and the case. I reload own rounds and those two parts are the most expensive. They wouldn't have to be super strong, they just need to be able to punch holes in a paper target.
jsilb28, if you reload ammo then surely you are familiar with the kinds of internal pressures generated when a cartridge fires. Presumably, you would also be familiar with the stresses on a bullet traveling faster than the speed of sound, while spinning.
And you think some kind of cheap, printable plastic is going to handle that?
The only way to curb gun violence is tighter restrictions. No gun advocate wants to here this but it's true (I'm a gun advocate and I barely like it).
The truth is, people keep getting hurt at the hands of people who either do not know how to properly handle their firearms or themselves (most specifically emotionally).
Let's face it, everyone should not be allowed the freedom to own a lethal weapon. If it means gun manufacturers stop selling rifles that can be "modded out" with tactical features similar to assault rifles that are utilized by military and para-military forces then so be it. Just play video games if you want to satisfy that urge.
It's just like driving. There are some people who have licenses that just don't belong behind the wheel of an automobile of any kind. The same applies for firearms. No one wants these freedoms to be encroached on, but when crime ensues due to the availability of lethal weapons of any kind, actually measures must be taken to put an end to the crime.
For this, the good do have to suffer for the bad. 20 children are dead because of one bad man, and because of one bad man, civilians may yet no longer be able to purchase anything other than handguns and sporting styled rifles (which is all one really needs because you do not need a tactical rifle that can be retrofitted with scopes or a dot, a flashlight, a laser pointer, and a bayonet stud to hunt large or small game or defend oneself from a hostile aggressor; and if you're trying to fight someone with better hardware you're in way over your head; drop the gun, call 9-11, and surrender before you end up like Denzel Washington at the end of Training Day).
Gun advocates have to learn how to close there mouths when someone talks about taking action to prevent violence. No one is trying to repeal the Second Amendment, and by falling behind it every time something like this happens only helps to continue to hurt the plight of gun owners because the same sentiments sound like broken records after a while.
This tragedy isn't even about guns. Who wants to stop the violence?
pheonix1012, does it matter that, out of 12,000+ homicides per year, that the guns you want to ban are involved in something around 100 of them?
"The truth is, people keep getting hurt at the hands of people who either do not know how to properly handle their firearms or themselves (most specifically emotionally)."
The truth is that these tragedies are caused by tiny number of rare people who were seriously mentally ill and, for whatever reason, didn't get treatment. The truth is that mass murders in schools by crazy people have happened before. The truth is that the records for deaths caused by those things are held by fires and gas explosions. In one case, a guy just loosened some gas pipes in the basement.
"Let's face it, everyone should not be allowed the freedom to own a lethal weapon."
Let's face it. There are already laws in place to prevent felons and the mentally ill from purchasing weapons. So who else are you talking about?
"If it means gun manufacturers stop selling rifles that can be "modded out" with tactical features similar to assault rifles that are utilized by military and para-military forces then so be it. Just play video games if you want to satisfy that urge."
ANY rifle can be "modded out" with "tactical features" -- whatever personal definition you may have for "tactical features." Not that it was any of your business to choose the private recreation of anyone else, anyway.
"It's just like driving. There are some people who have licenses that just don't belong behind the wheel of an automobile of any kind. The same applies for firearms."
So tell us what additional restrictions you would put that would prevent these people who "just don't belong behind the wheel" from "getting behind the wheel." Please compare your proposed restrictions with those already in place. The reason I ask you to do the comparison with restrictions already in place is that I don't think you even know the restrictions already in place.
" No one wants these freedoms to be encroached on,"
BS, pure and simple. The proof is in your own statements.
" but when crime ensues due to the availability of lethal weapons of any kind, actually measures must be taken to put an end to the crime."
Does it matter that -- even if an assault weapons ban was passed -- the number of incidents involved is so small that it could never have a significant statistical impact? Or is this just about running around like Chicken Little and passing whatever because we are all scared the sky is falling?
"For this, the good do have to suffer for the bad."
That is a truckload of malarkey.
"20 children are dead because of one bad man, and because of one bad man, civilians may yet no longer be able to purchase anything other than handguns and sporting styled rifles"
Define "sporting styled rifles". Is this some particular objective thing, or is this just same vague idea that you had because some rifles look scary to you? Does this have anything to do with the way they actually function or is it just about the looks?
"(which is all one really needs because you do not need a tactical rifle "
Define "tactical rifle".
"that can be retrofitted with scopes or a dot,"
Scopes and dots are used for hunting.
" a flashlight, a laser pointer,"
Why would you care if a law-abiding citizen who had never committed any crime and was unlikely to commit any, attached a flashlight or laser pointer to their rifles?
BTW, you did know that the primary reason for attaching a flashlight to a weapon is for home defense against night intruders, didn't you? You didn't?
" and a bayonet stud to hunt large or small game or defend oneself from a hostile aggressor;"
This "bayonet stud" thing is the stupidest thing ever. Why would you care whether it had a small lump of metal near the end of the barrel? Does this make the weapons more dangerous or something? Did you think there were a lot of drive-by bayonetting? Maybe liquor stores are getting stuck up by people carrying empty "assault weapons" with a bayonet on the end?
Why do you even care about bayonet lugs?
Just FYI, a friend of mine has a rifle that was covered under the "assault weapons" laws in California. It has a bayonet lug. If he files off the bayonet lug, it is legal. If he leaves it on, it is not legal. Same rifle. Uses the same ammunition. Same rate of fire. Everything is the same, except for one useless piece of metal. And you propose this sort of nonsense is supposed to have some significant impact on crime?
" and if you're trying to fight someone with better hardware you're in way over your head; drop the gun, call 9-11, and surrender before you end up like Denzel Washington at the end of Training Day)."
I agree with you there. So I guess your argument is that you ought to carry superior hardware in the first place.
"Gun advocates have to learn how to close there mouths when someone talks about taking action to prevent violence."
I would appreciate it if you could explain how any of your ideas would actually have a measurable statistical impact on violence.
" No one is trying to repeal the Second Amendment,"
Actually, yes, they are. If you will care to read it, it says "shall not be infringed."
" and by falling behind it every time something like this happens only helps to continue to hurt the plight of gun owners because the same sentiments sound like broken records after a while."
No, what hurts the most in this issue is the same thing that makes US drug laws so stupid. The fact is that the people who are crying for the most laws are the very people who know the least about the subject. That was the exact problem with the 1994 AWB and the reason it never had any impact on crime. I recall one female member of Congress walking up to a table full of scary-looking black rifles and she proudly proclaimed "I can't tell one from the other!"
Well, if you can't tell one from the other, then how in hell could you ever write - or even vote on - a sensible law?
"This tragedy isn't even about guns. Who wants to stop the violence?"
Yeah. Who wants to stop the violence?
As opposed to: Who wants to pass a bunch of feel-good laws that could not possibly have a significant impact on violence?
I CANADA we had a gun registry that was a waste of billions of $$$ .Now we have a gun owners registry that the police use not for guns but to see if you have a criminal record or domestic violence. For instance, I had to tell them if I was making out with another woman .I had to give her name and where she lives My wife had to sign it to say if it was true or not . This law only targets the gun owners .and is run on the gun owner every 24 hours without his consent But what about the dis honest guy that didn't have his gun registered ? He is not on this list.Meanwhile a lot of the guns have changed hands so we don't know where they are .Guns Don't kill people -People kill people ". The communist manifesto says" To control the people You Take away there guns and You occupy there minds .WE are BYLINGUAL,most of us can't even work for our Governmant
We have the metric system .We don't know how muuch it weighs or how far we have to go . HeY TOO MUCH GOVERNMENT