Another day, another bozo writes an inept column about firearms technology. This could become as boring a subject as wannabees. In this case, a writer named Mark Gibbs at Forbes has his panties in a bunch over the Have Blue 3R AR-15 we’ve previously covered. Here’s a taste of his sky-is-falling Luddism:

I’m in favor of tighter gun control and a ban on weapons that are unnecessarily powerful but I’m afraid that technology will soon make any legislation that limits the availability of any kinds of guns ineffective.

via The End of Gun Control? – Forbes.

Gibbs seems to have come to this opinion, as is typical for mainstream media guys, without ever looking at the primary source document — which he rudely, or ineptly (pick one), doesn’t link. (FYI it’s here: Have Blue). Instead he links to several superficial third-hand reports, and as a result his report is chockablock with errors, a few of which have been corrected.

For instance, the printer Have Blue used is not a $500 entry-level toy — it’s a high-end Stratasys, albeit an obsolete model. “A few years ago 3D printers were rare, hugely expensive, and hard to use,” Gibbs writes, which is a pretty good description of Have Blue’s roughly 15-year-old device (a fact he’d have known if he’d been curious enough to read the primary source or — God forbid a reporter would do this — contact the guy).

As a technology writer, Gibbs finds the next logical step in his ban plan, to ban 3D printers, to be a ban too far… so at least he’s concerned about civil liberties when they’re his own. What a guy!

What’s particularly worrisome is that the capability to print metal and ceramic parts will appear in low end printers in the next few years making it feasible to print an entire gun and that will be when gun control becomes a totally different problem.

Well, he has this going for him: weasels never soar, but they’re safe from getting sucked in to jet engines.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized on by Hognose.

About Hognose

Former Special Forces 11B2S, later 18B, weapons man. (Also served in intelligence and operations jobs in SF).

2 thoughts on “3D Gun Printing Fallout Continues


“I’m afraid that technology will soon make any legislation that limits the availability of any kinds of guns ineffective.”

Is this guy completely daft? Where does he thing guns come from, unicorn poo? You can go buy all manner of machines which can make guns and gun parts. They’re called machine tools, and I know several people who have no just one, but whole factories full of them. The horror!

Hognose Post author

Obviously we need to get these people under control. Why, just miles from me there’s a lady who has the awful dual-use technology of high-temperature metal casting. True, she uses it for casting fey kitten sculptures, but she could use it for all kinds of mischief.

In California, officialdom fears that hot-rodders (a CA concept the state was once proud of) are using new tech to make non-CARB-compliant intake manifolds and commit other types of mayhem upon Mother Gaia.

It is strange. Most people seem to think products come from some magical cornucopia and appear shrink-wrapped in WalMart or the supermarket without the effort and imagination of their human producers.

Lesson from the intel world: if you can imagine and do something, someone else can imagine and do the same thing, at least. And it’s commutative: if someone else can do it, so can you. You just need to learn what he or she knows. Simple, although not necessarily easy.

Lesson from the “defense against methods of entry” community: locks are to keep honest people out, and (if they’re really good locks) to slow burglars down and buy time. Same thing with prohibition-type laws, ban X and you have kept all the people that obey laws from getting X. Or as someone else put it, “after every shooting someone proposes a crackdown on the people that didn’t do it.”