A lot has been made about the 3D printing of firearms. Whether you are for or against the rights to own and operate a gun, there is no denying that 3D printing has created a bit of problem for those interested in controlling the distribution and availability of these potential weapons. We’ve seen several versions of 3D printed firearms come about over the past couple of years, most notably the Liberator gun from Defense Distributed’s creator Cody Wilson.
The great thing (or perhaps not so great… depending on which side of the political fence you stand on), is that 3D printing allows for completely custom creations, whether it be for medical devices, fashion wear, or firearms. For one college student, named Chris, 3D printing was the perfect solution for him to build his own unique semi-automatic revolver that he calls the ‘Yoshee Six Shooter.’
“Ever since I heard of Cody Wilson’s Liberator, I wanted to make my own 3D printed gun,” Chris tells 3DPrint.com. “I am a college student who has not taken any engineering classes. My hobby is making things, and so a 3D printer had my name written all over it.”
When it comes to designing objects to 3D print, Chris relies on his favorite design tool, Tinkercad. Best of all, the software is entirely free to use. In order to design his very unique-looking gun, Chris took a few design ideas from the Liberator, most notably for the springs and the spring holder on the gun.
“What I wanted to accomplish with this design was the ability to fire multiple shots without reloading,” Chris tells us. “I could have done this by coming up with a way to extract and eject the .22 cal rounds. However, I didn’t want to do this because it just makes things too complicated and would deter people from trying to print it. I figured that I could make a revolver style weapon that has multiple barrels. This would eliminate the need to extract and eject each round, and it makes the design simpler. For the barrel, I didn’t want the gun to explode so I had to use metal pipe for the barrel inserts. “
Chris’ gun consists of seven individually 3D printed parts, including the grip (taken from a user on Thingiverse), the hammer, two springs, a spring holder, the barrel and the barrel holder. In additional to these 3D printed parts, he did use some other components which were not 3D printed. These included a 5/16″ brake line from an auto parts store, which acts as the metal barrel inserts. The only other parts which were sourced from other means were a single nail and a screw. The nail is cut into parts which are used in order to pin the hammer so that it can rotate, and pin the springs so they exert force on the hammer. The screw is used as a firing pin to strike the rim of the .22 caliber round when fired.
While he has not fired live rounds from his gun, he does say that it is possible to use .22 LR caiber bullets if desired, although he warns that he doesn’t know what the results would be. He does say that the gun could be used in the wrong way, and if the wrong person were to get ahold of it, could in fact be used to harm or even kill another person.
“I do not plan to fire real bullets out of the gun, and have only fired .22 blanks that are used for construction projects,” Chris tells us. “It is important to note then, that I do not know how the gun will behave when real bullets are fired out of it. 5/16″ steel fuel/transmission line is capable of dealing with high pressures, but I’m not sure it would withstand the pressures of a real bullet. In the future, I’d like to use a .22 cal barrel liner which is a metal tube that is rifled and is typically used to restore old .22 caliber firearms. This would improve the strength of the gun as well as offer higher accuracy.”
Also with future iterations, Chris hopes to “stylize the design a bit more”, and while he considers it to be “ugly”, I would probably disagree with that assessment. To me it looks like a gun you would find in a video game.
What do you think about Chris’ 3D printed gun? Would you feel safe firing live rounds from it? Discuss in the Yoshee Six Shooter forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the video of the gun in action below.