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Printable Gun Downloads Top 100k In 2 Days, Thanks to Kim Dotcom 656

Posted by timothy
from the please-be-careful-out-there dept.
Sparrowvsrevolution writes "The promise of a fully 3D-printable gun is that it can spread via the Internet and entirely circumvent gun control laws. Two days after that digital weapon's blueprint first appeared online, it seems to be fulfilling that promise. Files for the printable gun known as that 'Liberator' have been downloaded more than 100,000 times in two days, according to Defense Distributed, the group that created it. Those downloads were facilitated by Kim Dotcom's startup Mega, which Defense Distributed is using to host the Liberator's CAD files. And it's also been uploaded to the Pirate Bay, where it's one of the most popular files in the filesharing site's uncensorable 3D printing category."
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Printable Gun Downloads Top 100k In 2 Days, Thanks to Kim Dotcom

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  • Yawn (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 09, 2013 @10:58AM (#43674927)

    The way this is promoted in the news you'd think that zip guns never existed, and until "just hours ago" there was no way to come up with an improvised weapon.

    • Re:Yawn (Score:5, Insightful)

      by TWiTfan (2887093) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:03AM (#43674997)

      Yeah, but this is the *hip*, *new* way to create cheap-ass zip guns!

      It's also a conveniently great excuse for the corporate slaves in Congress to decry those terrorist facilitators at Mega and The Pirate Bay.

      • Re:Yawn (Score:5, Insightful)

        by CanHasDIY (1672858) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:20AM (#43675185) Homepage Journal

        Yeah, but this is the *hip*, *new* way to create cheap-ass zip guns!

        No, it's the hip new way of creating zip guns that cost more than several actual firearms would, considering the cost of the printer and materials.

        • by tnk1 (899206)

          Sometimes when it means a weapon you can produce, on demand, with the materials at hand, the price is right no matter if it is much higher than otherwise.

          Not to mention that eventually, this process could produce a weapons superior to the crap that it creates now. The more people looking at this process and being able to replicate it, the better it could become.

          Agreed, that for people who know better, the current state of this art is overhyped crap. Too bad it is extremely illegal and even more unethical

          • Re:Yawn (Score:5, Interesting)

            by HornWumpus (783565) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @12:30PM (#43676147)

            I don't know of anything illegal or unethical about making a bunch of zip guns and turning them in for a gun buy-back. I'd go so far as to say it's a moral imperative. If you don't drain the gun buy-back fund with profitable junk, quality guns will be destroyed and utility will be lost.

          • Re:Yawn (Score:4, Interesting)

            by harrkev (623093) <kfmsdNO@SPAMharrelsonfamily.org> on Thursday May 09, 2013 @12:36PM (#43676253) Homepage

            Not to mention that eventually, this process could produce a weapons superior to the crap that it creates now.

            Seriously? A plastic magazine I can understand (I have a couple). A plastic receiver? Maybe, just maybe. Even real "plastic pistols" have steel rails reinforcing them. A plastic barrel? No thank you. Without a decent source of steel barrels, I do not see ANYTHING good coming from this except for more "Darwin Award" candidates.

            Not to mention that the "Liberators" (aka "the Darwinator") is a single-shot. Not a lot of room for improvement in single-shot guns. The tech is pretty much down to a science at this point (open action, replace bullet).

            Now, if 3d printing has a way to use stronger plastics in the future, the MAYBE this will lead to some unique designs, but I would still want steel in the barrel and the bolt. And how exactly would you 3D print an extractor claw, small pins and springs, etc. that are strong enough to survive more than one shot?

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by StripedCow (776465)

      Just like tablets didn't exist before the iPad.

    • BEFORE: Skilled Blue Collared metal workers could make a zip gun. As manufacturing is almost gone in America, this was a dying breed going the way of the winged water buffalo.

      NOW: The huge spat of nerds and computer programmers now have the means to accomplish what formerly required a moderately skilled metal worker.

      NOW THEY'RE SCARED. NERDS WITH GUNS!!!!

      • by Feyshtey (1523799)
        What skill? You can use a drill and screw together pipe fittings?
      • by WillgasM (1646719)
        Except that it never really took skill. As a young lad I made several (incredibly dangerous) guns out of scrap metal. All I had was a hacksaw, a drill, and some files. I could probably whip one out in under 30 minutes if properly motivated, and it would survive more than a couple rounds.
      • by telchine (719345)

        NOW THEY'RE SCARED. NERDS WITH GUNS!!!!

        I'm imagining a high noon showdown between Linus and RMS

      • NOW THEY'RE SCARED. NERDS WITH GUNS!!!!

        Nerds with guns? What an idea.

        Some Techies Hear Call of the Shooting Range [wsj.com]

        Eric S. Raymond's Home Page - Eric's Gun Nut Page [catb.org]

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Mr. Slippery (47854)

        BEFORE: Skilled Blue Collared metal workers could make a zip gun.

        Skilled metal workers? Zip guns are more like the work of juvenile delinquents [brooklynpu...ibrary.org] and prison inmates [correctionsone.com]. Skilled black market machinists can make much better weapons, like submachine guns [military.com].

    • by mcmonkey (96054)

      The way this is promoted in the news you'd think that zip guns never existed, and until "just hours ago" there was no way to come up with an improvised weapon.

      The difference is, things like "zip guns" are actual guns that fire. This story is about plans that could potentially be used to make a gun. Are there 100k 3D printers that could use these plans in existence?

      I'm guessing most of these downloads will live the life of most warez and media downloaded. It will sit forgotten in someone's download folder, gathering dust, until it is eventually deleted or lost unused.

      100k downloads translate into how many guns printed? I'd put the over/under at 20.

  • Not when somebody can drop an anchor on your cable...

  • by Hentes (2461350) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @10:59AM (#43674947)

    Give gun nuts a tool to blow themselves up with.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Give gun nuts a tool to blow themselves up with.

      Just because you find weapons have no purpose in your life doesn't mean that you can decry someone who appreciates and finds value in weapons.

      • ...taking out anybody stupid enough to fire one of these things.

        Why bother, when you can go to wal mart and buy a real gun? That's a question only a Teabilly Loon can answer.

        • by Myopic (18616) *

          Because at Walmart you have to pass a background check.

          You have a shortsighted view of this issue: imagine in a few years when 3D printers can print with a metal epoxy (like JB Weld) so that the gun can shoot 10,000 times MTBF instead of 3 times MTBF.

    • Let drunk drivers drive and they will get themselves killed.

      Problem is, they harm others and don't consider this. Just consider someone drunk or angry with a gun in their hand.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Feyshtey (1523799)
      Aside from the fact that you assume anyone that is a proponent of the 2nd Amendment is too incompetent to evaluate and safely utilize this technology, you also demonstrate that this whole argument really has nothing to do with saving lives. You're perfectly willing to sacrafice innocent lives so long as their loss serves your political agenda.
      • You completely overlooked the voluntary vs. involuntary / negligent aspect of that loss of life. I'm all for assisted suicide and less state nannying when people decide to put only themselves in dangerous situations.

    • by PortHaven (242123)

      If there weren't guns in America. (Be it civilian, police and military.) You wouldn't be here...

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        ...unless you are Native American. Then there would be a lot more of you here.

      • by femtobyte (710429)

        Really? Places with no guns have zero people? Aside from pedantic arguments that alternate prior histories would produce alternate people (so "you" in specific would not be here, but a lot of different people would), I'd say the entire history of human civilization before guns (and continued existence of humans in regions of less or no guns) flatly contradicts the idea that guns are a basic necessity of life.

  • It's 2.12 MB (2.02 MiB), so it's not like it would break the bank, even if it wasn't hosted by Kimmy.
    Link to the Pirate Bay [thepiratebay.sx], or you can add this to your Torrent software:

    magnet:?xt=urn:btih:6c4089ac6c134f1b2dff18499658b228d9eb2657&dn=Liberator+-+First+3D+Printable+Gun&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.openbittorrent.com%3A80&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.publicbt.com%3A80&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.istole.it%3A6969&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.ccc.de%3A80

    STL files.

  • How many printed? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by schneidafunk (795759) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:10AM (#43675055)
    100,000 sounds like a lot of downloads, but I would bet that less than 10% will actually go through the process of printing one. Of those printed, many hobbyists will just do it to see if it's possible. How many people are going to be willing to fire one?
  • Which law? (Score:4, Informative)

    by WillgasM (1646719) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:11AM (#43675061) Homepage
    Exactly which gun control law does this circumvent? AFAIK, exchanging blueprints isn't illegal.
    So long as you're not a felon or selling guns you've printed, no laws have been broken.
    • Re:Which law? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Feyshtey (1523799) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:16AM (#43675131)
      Not even printing and assemblng the weapon breaks gun control law. You need no license or certification to produce a firearm, unless that weapon is a class3 (fully auto, cannons, sawed off shotguns, mortars, etc.), or you intend to sell it.
      • by swillden (191260)

        Not even printing and assemblng the weapon breaks gun control law. You need no license or certification to produce a firearm, unless that weapon is a class3 (fully auto, cannons, sawed off shotguns, mortars, etc.), or you intend to sell it.

        Almost. There is federal law banning the production of "undetectable" guns, so you have to be sure you add a significant chunk of metal to make it legal. Assuming you do that, then, yes, it's legal.

    • Exactly which gun control law does this circumvent?

      Why 3D-Printed Untraceable Guns Could Be Good For America [forbes.com]

      . . . current law already allows home hobbyists to build their own firearms provided they are for personal use only (and not for sale). Such guns are already “untraceable.” 3D-printing doesn’t change that basic fact — it merely allows a wider range of hobbyists without specialized machine shop skills to do what’s already legal. . . more [forbes.com]

  • entirely circumvent gun control laws

    In countries where that are significant gun control laws, I doubt that this is going to change much. Such countries also have other laws that control other things. In the US this would be a very expensive way to circumvent laws that do not exist. Any FFL compliance is voluntary. Anyone can sell gun to anyone on the street. The only prosecutions that occur is when there is knowledge that the sale would otherwise be regulated. I have seen sales go off on school prop

  • Bullet control (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ehud42 (314607) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:11AM (#43675073) Homepage

    Not to say that DIY'ers can't get around this, but all them fancy guns need fancy bullets. Home made guns will also need decent bullets. So, why not tighten up bullet control:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZrFVtmRXrw [youtube.com]

    (It's Chris Rock)

    I realize lots of hunters, etc reload their own, but I'm not aware of too many DIY'ers who are able to make reliable primers (might be wrong) - so maybe just control the sale and distribution of primers?

  • by Hartree (191324) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:13AM (#43675101)

    And, out of those 100K+ downloads, what fraction of a percent will actually get printed out, and what fraction of those will actually get assembled to the point of working?

    • That sounds like the Drake Equation [wikipedia.org] used to estimate the number of active, communicative extraterrestrial civilizations. You have the first three steps...

      1. How many people will download it? (solved)
      2. How many people will print it?
      3. How many will assemble it?
      4. How many will fire it?
      5. How many will actually use it to further a crime?
      6. How many will cause injury with it in the commission of a violent crime?
      7. How many will kill somebody with it?

      I'm guessing it's going to round to zero by about step 5.

  • Uhm (Score:4, Insightful)

    by noobermin (1950642) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:16AM (#43675137) Journal

    DISCLAIMER: I am a godless liberal in some respects, so I might be biased...but this is becoming like bitcoin, guys. A 3D printed gun is cool to me as a demonstration of the advanced state of the technology, but we don't need a story of even little happening with TEH 3D PRONTED GUNNS (GUBERMIENT, etc).

    Slashdot has become awash with political crap. Let's return to a site for nerds, stuff that matters. Not stuff that rallies the libertarians and the collectivists, okay?

    • by ThePeices (635180)

      Slashdot has become awash with political crap. Let's return to a site for nerds, stuff that matters. Not stuff that rallies the libertarians and the collectivists, okay?

      I would mod you up even more for your insightful words, but you are already at +5.

      Slashdot, *please* go back to News for Nerds, Stuff that Matters!
      And while im in rant mode, *please* realise that not all of us are Americans, Stuff that Matters shouldnt be about some democrat vs republican bullshit.

  • Summary is wrong (Score:4, Informative)

    by SirGarlon (845873) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @11:34AM (#43675329)

    The promise of a fully 3D-printable gun is that it ... entirely circumvent[s] gun control laws.

    I'm sorry, that is just false. In my state, Massachusetts, for example, you need a license to *possess* any firearm.

    All 3D-printable weapons really circumvent is the Federal background check, which you can just as easily bypass by buying at a gun show. Well, that and whatever state laws may require a license to buy a gun but not to own or carry it. (Those may or may not exist; if they do then they seem pretty stupid.)

    It would be smart to at least check what the laws in your state actually are, before you print one of these puppies out.

  • How about thanks to the media and legal hoo-ha around the whole thing? I bet most people wouldn't have heard of the project if it hadn't been reported on so much (see also: Streisand effect).

Never buy from a rich salesman. -- Goldenstern

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