Fabrication power to the People! Why no government can stop the 3D printing revolution
by Mike Adams
Friday, May 10, 2013
The 3D printing revolution has arrived, and it’s freaking out governments around the world because distributed, non-centralized fabrication technology threatens their monopolistic controls over physical objects. For a few thousand dollars, anyone can purchase a 3D printer (an “additive” desktop fabrication device) and print out physical objects using ABS plastic. (See list of manufacturers, below.) 3D plans are freely available to download online, and the printers are on the verge of flooding into the marketplace with a wide range of affordable, easy to use models from a large number of manufacturers.
Being able to print your own objects sounds amazing to the average citizen. Need a hose mender for your garden hose? Don’t drive to Home Depot to get it — just print it! Need a replacement part for your child’s toy? Just design it in 3D software and print it! Any object you can imagine can be printed in ABS plastic, including complex gears and objects with intricate details. Many printers can print in multiple colors, too.
Cody Wilson from Defense Distributed famously designed and tested a printable gun that fires a single round of .380 auto ammo. Pistols, it turns out, aren’t that complicated. They essentially need nothing more than a trigger, a firing pin, a chamber to hold the round and a barrel to allow it to accelerate out when fired. Wilson’s innovation was making a gun work out of plastic.