While even the most detached layperson will tell you they are aware of some of the amazing and positive feats being accomplished with 3D printing — from heartwarming stories of children (and even their pets) being fitted with affordable, customized 3D printed prosthetics to information regarding global progress as 3D printing is making huge strides in manufacturing of high-quality components — most everyone is also well-acquainted with and interested in the most controversial item 3D printers can make: guns.
And gun enthusiasts certainly aren’t silencing themselves (though they can silence their guns) when it comes to putting their 3D printed designs out there to the public. What’s the point of 3D printing a cool new gun if you can’t show it off while you are spectacularly blowing away ‘stuff’ in your backyard shooting range — and especially when it comes to raising the bar with an even more powerful weapon that’s hot off the press.
Recently, there’s been excitement brewing over a new and even more powerful 3D printed lower receiver. This one has significance because, unlike some of its predecessors, it very possibly may possess not only the power, but also the resilience and durability to shoot without issue, and keep shooting without any imminent breakdown or failure looming for the user.
The PrintedFirearm team has given us all a heads up, by way of a very abbreviated clip, that indeed 3D printed gunmaking skills have been seriously elevated with the CM901, the AR-10 lower receiver, evolving past the much discussed AR-15, which while making big headlines, was problematic in its design and failure rate with many initials versions demonstrating complete breakdown.
The CM901 is being touted as a 3D printed, super powerful gun that fires the 7.62-millimeter bullet. Because this is an even heavier weapon that should suffer more substantial recoil, it’s of enormous interest that it seems to be functional right out of the gate.
“Yes people its pure awesome sauce and it has been tested, fired with little to no issues,” reported the PrintedFirearm group. “JT and the gang continue to perfect this design.”
The 3D printed lower receiver was produced on the XYZ da Vinci 1.0 3D Printer, retailing for $499, which is impressive to all in terms of 3D printing, but even more so to those considering getting into the business of making their own guns.
The CM901 is also versatile in its modular design, which allows it to fire off 5.56-millimeter rounds as well. The information PrintedFirearm has released so far certainly is not extensive enough for any true analysis and borders on teasing, but it is certainly enough to grab the interest of many who are going to want to test it for themselves, or at least see some more demos.
While the 3D printing industry has become one that is constantly improving on itself with even more progressive technology, equipment, and mindblowing innovations that keep getting better and better, those interested in 3D printing weapons surely are not sitting idly by; in fact, they almost seem to want to own 3D printing — after all, the technology has the growing ability to give them what they want without any interference — and 3D printed guns have certainly owned plenty of headlines lately too.
What is the real reason that gun enthusiasts are turning to the high-tech savvy of the 3D printer? Is it that they want to embrace innovation and creativity? Perhaps. After all, it’s not exactly easy to make a gun under any circumstances. But 3D printing solves a few problems, and creates numerous controversies along the way too.
If you can parlay some cash into a 3D printer, you have the flexibility and independence to prototype on your own, as well downloading files and receiving all sorts of support from the maker community with ongoing conversation, tips for improvements, and other open-source designs. And because the lower receiver of the gun is by most opinions considered to be the central part of the weapon and is federally regulated, 3D printing offers a great way for gun enthusiasts and US makers to exercise their private right to make weapons without any of the process required when you go to a gun shop and are subjected to a background check, which is sometimes tricky even if one doesn’t formally have a ‘record,’ as other items can be flagged and cause not only embarrassment, but delay.
Are you going to be following the progress of the CM901? What are your thoughts on 3D printed guns, and especially the more powerful ones now being manufactured on inexpensive 3D printers? Tell us your thoughts in the 3D Printed AR-10 Lower Receiver forum thread over at 3DPB.com.