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'Maybe I'll go to Hell,' 3D printed plastic gun developer Cody Wilson admits

Posting in Energy
 
3d-printed-gun-is-here.jpg
 Cody Wilson, founder of Defense Distributed, is considered by some to be a threat to public safety by placing 3D printed weaponry into the hands of the general public. To others, he is simply the catalyst that prompted interest in 3D printing technology within the weapons field.

At an Adam Smith Institute event in London, Wilson spoke at length about his company, Defense Distributed, which hit the headlines after releasing blueprints for the 3D printed Liberator pistol, usable with a home 3D printer.

Wilson published the Liberator blueprints on May 6 last year. While videos floated around the Internet showing failed attempts to shoot the Liberator, Wilson calls this "propaganda," as the plastic used was not that specified in the blueprints. Speaking to The Register, Wilson commented:

"They made it from PLA [polylactide] plastic, not the spec in the plans. It was built to fail,” he insisted to us. “If you build it out of ABS [acrylonitrile butadiene styrene] plastic, it does not explode. In fact you can shoot it eight, nine or ten times and then the barrel cracks. Then you replace the barrel or cease firing.
I recognise why they [the authorities] did it. I'm not even mad about it; this is what government has to do. But it's a great way of raising interest in what we do."

The Liberator blueprint was downloaded hundreds of thousands of times before U.S. officials forced Wilson to remove the files from the company's website, but can still be found online. Wilson made the point that despite widespread ownership of the files, there is yet to be a single reported case of the Liberator being used to injure someone.

"Maybe I'll go to Hell, but I think it's a good thing," Wilson says.

3D printed guns are not the only topic of interest to the 26-year-old. Wilson has also launched an IndieGoGo campaign for Dark Wallet, a light browser extension for Bitcoin wallets with heightened security features.

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Read on: The Register

Image credit: Defense Distributed

— By on April 22, 2014, 4:27 AM PST

Charlie Osborne

Contributing Editor

Charlie Osborne is a freelance journalist and photographer based in London. In addition to SmartPlanet, she also writes for business technology website ZDNet and consumer technology site CNET. She holds a degree in medical anthropology from the University of Kent. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure