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Is This a Good Idea?: A Working 3D-Printed Gun


The gun debate has always been part of the national dialogue, even before heartbreaking tragedies like the Newtown massacre and the mass shootings in Tucson, Arizona and Aurora, Colorado forced people who avoid such debates to face the roles and dangers that unfettered access to guns present and create on a daily basis in America. Now thanks to technology and information access, it’s taken a very strange turn especially for a debate that involves the likes of Ted Nugent and Piers Morgan.

3D printing technology allows anyone with the know-how and enough printable plastic to make just about anything from kitchen appliances to accurate renderings of works of art. Naturally, someone came up with a design for a plastic gun and according to one 3D printer owner, it actually fires a .22 rimfire round that may not be as powerful as a metal firearm but can still do some serious damage to the poor flesh bag who is standing in its path.

This got us thinking: Is this a good idea?


– Homemade weapons, also known as “zip guns,” aren’t a new concept. These will undoubtedly be bound to the same laws (assuming there are any) as the improvised shotgun that some MacGyver-wannabe made with PCV piping, a cigarette lighter and gum.

– It’s pretty bulky and still looks fairly gun-esque so if some nut wanted to smuggle it into an airport or any place with an X-ray scanner, he might have a hard time convincing a security guard that it’s just an extra-large asthma inhaler.

– Guns may be the most controversial, hot-button issue of the day but you’d be hard pressed to find a better test of our First and Second Amendments (and no, those aren’t the ones that deal with housing soldiers and whether or not you can urinate in public).


– It’s a plastic freakin’ gun! Didn’t we see “In the Line of Fire” with Clint Eastwood and John Malkovich? I wouldn’t feel safe if John Malkovich the actor had access to a plastic gun.

– Being able to fire a .22 caliber bullet may not be the same as issuing a nuclear launch directed at someone’s face but such firepower can be still very lethal in the wrong hands.

– Did I mention that it’s a gun made of freaking plastic that can fire not-at-all plastic bullets?!?

We want to know what you think. Cast your vote below and let us know if you think this is a good idea.

  • COED Writer
    I'm human. I swear.