Defense Distributed group says 3D technology could create first printable gun called Wiki Weapon

3D plastics printers could be used by group

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - While some are arguing about banning certain guns, a Texas based group says it's using new technology to make it easier for anyone to get one.

In fact, it could soon be coming to a 3D printer near you. The high tech printers can create all kinds of interesting and fun creations.

But a group called Defense Distributed out of Texas said it's close to making a printable gun a reality. It's a gun people could print from home.

It's called a Wiki Weapon. The group has been testing the parts and posting the videos to the internet.

Tom Sattler own's Quantum Leap, it's a 3D printing business in West Palm Beach. He said the technology is there to create just about anything. "You could print the geometry of a gun or brass knuckles or anything you wanted to do," said Sattler.

But, he wants no part of that side of the technology.

"You're talking about very dodgy, dangerous situations," said Sattler.

The man behind Defense Distributed said he has already created and tested most of the components of the plastic gun separately. But he's still testing the prototype for an entire gun. 

"What's great about the Wiki Weapon is it only needs to be lethal once," said Cody Wilson of Defense Distributed in one of the group's YouTube videos.

It's an unsettling thought for Joe Rice of the Palm Beach Shooting Center.

"It' s not a good thing," said Rice.

Rice is a gun advocate. But he said it could be an opportunity for people to get hurt and also to get around background checks and licensing.

"You'd have to be sanctioned by the government to do so, if you weren't, you'd be like making crack cocaine in your kitchen, you can do all sorts of stuff, but it's not legal," he said.

Rice said just being able to print a key portion of a gun is a concern. The lower part, called the receiver, is the part that is licensed and has a registration number.

"If you already had the parts and couldn't get the receiver and you've got a guy that has a 3D printer and he prints up a lower receiver, yea, that's problematic," he said.

A spokesperson for Defense Distributed said in a YouTube video "...anywhere there's a computer, there's a weapon."

Repeated attempts to contact the group were unsuccessful. A spokesperson for Florida Department of Law Enforcement said it would not comment on possible future technology.

Investigative Producer Lynn Walsh contributed to this story.

 

 


 

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