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You can’t stop the signal

US State Department tells Defense Distributed to takedown the 3D printed gun files.

Too late, it’s already out there.

Like the encryption fights.

Update: Get it here (with crypto hashes) or here.

29 Responses to “You can’t stop the signal”

  1. Jim from Louisiana Says:

    Please send me a site that does not provide malware with it. The site David Codrea linked to had me spending 2 hours cleaning out my computer.

  2. SayUncle Says:

    Examiner site?

    See update in post for where to get it.

  3. Steve Says:

    Help us Barbara Streisand, you’re our only hope!

  4. emdfl Says:

    Good old state and ITAR. ITAR which was originally sold as a way to regulate INTERNATIONAL trade in certain military related hardware and such manufactured by large multinational US based corporations. And like EVERY other regulation created by every bureacracy has grown like Topsy to now include SOT manufacturer of firearms large and small in the US.

  5. Old NFO Says:

    Yep, here we go again… sigh

  6. Tam Says:

    I was going to say “Ms. Streisand could not be reached for comment,” but Steve beat me to it. ๐Ÿ˜€

  7. Bryan S. Says:

    the Firearm Owners Against Crime group on FB has it hosted on there.

  8. wastme Says:

    Seems like they could do just like other vendors and put a check box on the site saying its not exportable and by downloading the file, the user agrees not to export it.

  9. nk Says:

    It is to laugh. A plastic toy cap-gun* that requires at minimum an $8,000 printer. Waiting for ammo to turn it into a firecracker. I don’t know to whom to say “Get a job” first — Wilson or the State Department.

    I had one of these when I was a kid, storebought, made out of tin. A spring-loaded nail “fired” a cork with a paper cap glued to it. At six, I was stupid enough to try to put a real shell in it but my father kept those away from me.

  10. Tam Says:


    It’s as much of a joke as a sheet metal toy cap gun that took a whole headlight factory to make, and it seems to get the same kind of people’s knickers in a twist, which makes me happy.

    I am assuming from your post that you missed the video of the test-firing?

  11. nk Says:

    Tam, yes I did, but I have now hunted down several videos on YouTube, once you gave me the heads up. Ok, it fires and doesn’t always blow up.

    Still, I’m sticking to my guns ;). Nine out of ten readers here already know how to make a zipgun with a utility knife, a hand drill, a pair of pliers, and a screwdriver (maybe a file too); from a faucet nipple with a matching threaded end cap, a piece of scrap wood, three hose clamps, two nails, and a big rubber band that the post office leaves with your bundled mail. (For those who don’t, it would be better if they did not try to look up any instructions. ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

  12. The Jack Says:

    And nk. Will the feds yank videos and pics of people making zip guns?

    Because that’s indentical to what they did to Def Dib.

    Or maybe as Joe Huffman warns they’ll go after people doing reviews or teaching vids. Because telling people about guns and how to use them is also exporting data.

  13. The Jack Says:

    Heck your comment itself counts too.

  14. Tam Says:

    Still, I’m sticking to my guns

    I See What You Did There. ๐Ÿ˜€

  15. Tam Says:

    The Jack,

    Or maybe as Joe Huffman warns they’ll go after people doing reviews or teaching vids. Because telling people about guns and how to use them is also exporting data.

    Firearms trainers already have to be ITAR compliant.

  16. David Codrea Says:

  17. The Jack Says:

    Tam, that’s a good point. Training vids too if I recall, now.

    So yeah, I see a big can of worms opening up here.

    Interesting how this is from a “Those furiners are learning our zipgun secrets!” angle.

    But arms export control does work that way, since data on how to use a Republic Widget 43 would be just as restricted as a crate of Widget 43s.

  18. Bubblehead Les Says:

    I know I’m Dating myself (and I wish those Damned Kids would get off my Lawn!), but something tells me the SCOTUS Ruling on the Pentagon Papers from the early ’70s will becoming into play.

    And the SCHADENFREUDE from watching the New York Times Tap-Dancing around the Fact that the Ruling about “Printing Articles that the Gooberment wanted Suppressed” says “New York Times” will be Delicious!

  19. aerodawg Says:


    And Orville and Wilbur only flew 120 feet. Who wants to fly 120 feet right?

    In engineering development, proof of concept always comes first, then you make it practical and better….

  20. nk Says:

    Thank you, The Jack. That’s the main point, I guess, that nobody can disagree with. That the State Department is silly. International Arms Trade? There are thousands of front-yard smithies in the Khyber Pass alone knocking out AKs complete with the markings of your nation of preference (Chinese, I have read, is the most desirable).

  21. wastme Says:

    Whatever the US does, it only applies to the US. There is a whole slew of people who will jump on this who are not American. For instance, I anticipate the sales of 3d printers will be going up south of the border.

    I’m not an expert but I did look around at 3d printers a couple months ago to see how much they are and one was just hitting the market at less that 4k. I imagine it will be like any other technology and the price will go down as they start making more of them.

    If you can make your own, they don’t have to last forever. And sometimes, you only need a few shots. Now they need biodegradable materials and after you get done, you can bury them, never to be found again. No proof when it was made, and no proof it even existed.

  22. Jim from Louisiana Says:

    The malware wasn’t from Examiner but from Pirate Bay. I’m at the Examiner a couple of times a day and their popups and stuff can be annoying, but not infectious. And they need to pay the bills, so it’s all good.

  23. comatus Says:

    Sure glad we weren’t having a lay-it-on-the-bar Constitutional Crisis back when the arsenals of democracy were selling off all those old Bridgeport machines. I’d have never gotten any motorcycle parts made.

  24. SayUncle Says:

    Ah, pirate bay. The distribute every thing!

  25. nk Says:

    comatus, you can do anything with a vertical mill.

  26. Tai Says:

    Right, because if there’s one thing we don’t need in this world, it’s the Taliban figuring out that they can make GUNS with their 3D printers. /sarcasm

  27. whitestone Says:

    A bit off topic here but it needs to be passed on. Square Up just put out their new merchant agreement recently and there are some changes to it that those of us in the industry that use(d) them might want to take notice of… they had previously considered it a violation of the agreement to use their service to pay for: “(23) internet/mail order/telephone order firearm or weapon sales”. Now, you are in violation of your agreement if you use them for: “(23) sales of (i) firearms, firearm parts or hardware, and ammunition; or (ii) weapons and other devices designed to cause physical injury”.
    In other words… screw you, FFL dealers, gunsmiths, ammo dealers, knife dealers and parts suppliers. I’m curious if selling a pressure cooker will void your agreement… kitchen stores beware…
    I had been previously ‘cash only’ and recently expanded my services to include taking cards but there are fewer and fewer services that will cater to us ‘little guys’ as a group.
    They have positioned themselves out of a profitable market for the sake of PC like Intuit, B.O.A, G.E Capital and several others… personally, I will not patronize any establishment that displays the Square logo. Sad.

    Sorry for the digression…

  28. whitestone Says:

    Back on topic… does anyone actually think that the Def Dist plans were the ONLY ones out there… there are thousands of folks that have CAD/CAM knowledge and have the ability to design and manufacture any variety of weapons/ destructive devices… 3D printed hand grenades anyone? The FedGov is chasing at shadows trying to put this all back in the bottle. Will Schumer suppress another entire industry?

  29. JKB Says:

    Well, the truth is, DDTC is just protecting its turf. There has been no commodity jurisdiction determination so they don’t know if the drawings are controlled or by whom. Or if they fall under the public domain information exception. Basically, at this point, nobody has registered with DDTC, paid their fees and then waited the years until they get around to doing some work and issue a determination.

    And, although really on a proof of concept, these 3-D printer guns are not really of value to foreign governments, rebel factions or terrorist organizations, whom controlling the export of guns and gun technology to being the purpose of the ITAR.

    In any case, the firearm design is neither unique or innovative in itself. The uniqueness resides in the production techniques which are incorporated into the printer not the CAD drawings. Or am I wrong and this gun design incorporates design technologies not already widely known? Or is it simply an old design modified for production on new technology?