Saturday, May 11, 2013

ITAR and bloody dafties

Well, someone has done gone and got their knickers into a half-hitch regarding the 3D printed pistol (the fact that the pistol is called "Liberator" brings a smile to my heart) and has used the International Traffic in Arms Regulations to order the plans pulled from the website.

*snort*

The entirely predictable result -- well, predictable to anyone who knows human nature, the Internet, or has a passing knowledge of the movie/video game/music business in general -- was that a significant number of netizens cocked snooks in the general direction of the Department of State, and about ten squillion copies of the 3D gun hit the torrents about three microseconds later.

I'm pretty sure that today a whole bunch of folks are irritated by having to pick gun designs out of their pirated music and porn downloads, but macht nichts.

The whole excitement involving the 3D gun raised an eyebrow at Rancho LawDog, but not much else. Oh, it's interesting, in a techie sort of way, but anyone can buy a CNC mill (or get access to a machine shop) and do the exact same thing, but in metal instead of plastic, with less chance of explosive disassembly, and pretty much the same bite out of your wallet.

Hell, the original FP-45 was pretty much designed to be manufactured by an assembly line consisting of three trained chimpanzees with hammers, a shop steward who had enough brains to pick his nose without giving himself a lobotomy, and a UPS truck.

The STEN gun was a little more intricate, requiring some familiarity with the location of the nearest plumbing warehouse.

Since I've personally seen a 3rd world blacksmith with a charcoal fire, hand tools, and a donkey make perfectly-functional copies of late 19th Century and early 20th Century rifles and pistols; and a brief search of the Internet will turn up the saga of the gentleman who made an AK47 in his garage out of a shovel and a $30 barrel blank -- well, the whole Fed.gov melt-down over the 3D pistol just goes to reinforce my view that the critters who are allegedly running this country don't know a single bloody thing about history, human nature, smithing, guns in general, the history of guns, or engineering.

Matter-of-fact, this whole sorry episode is going to be another footnote in the annals of history that future scholars will point to and say, "This was the period of time in which the Government of the United States consisted solely of people who didn't have any business running anything more complicated than a lemonade stand without adult supervision."

I swear, it's getting to the point where someone needs to walk into the next session of Congress with a malacca cane, give every single Congresscritter and Senate-critter five good strokes and send them to bed without their supper until they start acting like bloody adults.

Growl.

LawDog

38 comments:

Aesop said...

Can we skip the sending them to bed part, and just continue the canings until they start to act like adults?

Pleeeeease??

Old NFO said...

Cannot disagree with a single thing you've said Sir... dammit...

Skip said...

Maybe something a mite stronger than caning.

BGMiller said...

:reads post:
:reads post again:

Yeah...
That is about the long and the short of it.


BGM

Anonymous said...

It is not just Congress. It is also the permanent bureaucrat class ensconced in their regulatory warrens. They are the faceless, unaccountable drones that use IRS rules as a witch-hunt against the Tea Party organizations because they dare to use the words Tea Party. They are the ones that use EEOC rules to demand people hire criminals and sex offenders. They are the ones that think banning a CAD file or PGP cipher is effective.

And they will be the ones choosing your doctors and your allowed medical treatments based on your age, demographic status and how "connected" you are.

Jedi Master Ivyan said...

There was no more certain way to make sure those plans became widely available than by forcing the creator to take the originals off the internets.

Well Seasoned Fool said...

What a delicious moment, imagining the reaction of the gun grabbers as they learned about this development.

Anonymous said...

Heck, I don't have access to a 3-D printer, I've got sufficient weaponry (as in: as much as I can afford to keep in ammo at this point), and I'm still considering downloading the plans just out of spite!

LittleRed1

Borepatch said...

It's government as performance art.

OldAFSarge said...

Hear, hear! Well said Sir, well said.

Anonymous said...

Lawdog:
I saw,and fired, a functional .50
caliber muzzleloader made from wood, steel tubing, screen door springs, and one hook and eye.
The maker said he could make his own powder too, but had commercial stuff that day.

Went bang. Hit what I shot it at.
Have a pic to prove it.

Have thought about building one
from time to time.
Haven't--yet.

Robin Bobcat said...

Yeah.. this is no different than a 'zip gun' or those frighteningly kludged weapons Chechen rebels were using.

I think the only worry is that this requires NO knowledge to make, just the plans. You don't need to weld anything, shape anything, or even saw anything. Just plug the plans in, hit 'print', then put the parts together.

Given the thing is a big bulky block, and a single-shot weapon, I don't really fear armed gangs of thugs cavorting about with them.

I would be tempted to get/print one in bright glossy greens and yellows and stamp it with a Fisher-Price logo.

bedlamite said...

You can't even run a lemonade stand anymore.

Monkeywrangler said...

Good to see you posting again Lawdog! Hope you and Herself had a grand time at the Convention!

Vic303

Graybeard said...

Excellently said.

Isn't the lower receiver on an M2 - the part that's technically the gun - just a piece of sheet metal with holes drilled around the perimeter? Any group that would call a piece of sheet a gun couldn't possibly be trusted to do anything intelligent?

Heck, for three years it was the law of the land (BATFE decision) that a shoelace was a machine gun. Reference

Anonymous said...

The fuss is, 3D printers and computers are the hot technology right now Any 10 year old can download a file, and there are 3D printers that can replicate themselves (Rep Rap Open source).

How many 10 year olds know what a lathe is, let alone how to operate one, or even know you can go to Home Depot and build a gun from plumbing supplies? Damn few, so the DC critters aren't concerned. Hell, most of THEM probably don't know what a lathe is, either.

Besides, the real goal isn't in getting rid of them--it's making them illegal. That's how you get power over others.

Antibubba

Anonymous said...

Lawdog,

Cheap CNC machine = $6800

Cheap 3d printer capable of printing the liberator- $700

Tam said...

SiGraybeard,

This is a machine gun.

Given we live in a land where machine guns are regulated, which part would you call the machine gun?

DaddyBear said...

"Hell, the original FP-45 was pretty much designed to be manufactured by an assembly line consisting of three trained chimpanzees with hammers, a shop steward who had enough brains to pick his nose without giving himself a lobotomy, and a UPS truck."

Century Arms is making FP-45's now? Sweet.

toadold said...

Back in the day their was a rumor that the spooks had a "glass gun". It shot a large diameter glass projectile with a charge of black powder out of a synthetic pistol. The black powder was ignited by a trigger that generated static electricity which ignited the black powder. It wouldn't set off the metal detectors of the day. Rumor had it they had a two shot version. It was supposedly used by agents who had to travel by air and be armed when they landed.

toadold said...

Back in the day their was a rumor that the spooks had a "glass gun". It shot a large diameter glass projectile with a charge of black powder out of a synthetic pistol. The black powder was ignited by a trigger that generated static electricity which ignited the black powder. It wouldn't set off the metal detectors of the day. Rumor had it they had a two shot version. It was supposedly used by agents who had to travel by air and be armed when they landed.

Steve C said...

Ya know, instead of rails, you could cover the thing in Lego lugs.

Anonymous said...

I see the 3-D gun as being the current logical step in American do-it-yourself technology.It wasn't hard to forsee,it was inevitable.We have had prisoners under guard 24/7 making zip guns and killing each other for years,and 10 yr old boys making potato launchers with soda cans and duct tape.With the ever improving technology available to all,it was only a matter of time until somebody could make plastic guns on their computer.The surprise is that the Feds didn't see it coming until OMG somebody made a gun!Gotta put a stop to that!!
And they apparently don't understand how algores internets works,if they think that once being posted ,it can be stopped now.If you tell someone they can't have something,that's all they think about.How many times do you think it's been downloaded by now,a zillion?
Billf

Opinionated Grump (Rich in NC) said...

"and about ten squillion copies of the 3D gun hit the torrents about three microseconds later."
...and I burst out in Guffaw (h/t Guffaw in AZ). I laughed long enough for tears to squirt out of my eyes.

I don't like it that you only post every 6 weeks or so.

I love it that it's worth the wait for the flavor of your free ice cream is absolutely delicious.

"...Act like bloody adults..."
Hasn't that been bred out of them?
Rich in NC

Scott said...

ITAR? I really should have seen that one coming.

But for the love of all that's holy, it's pretty easy to set up a US IP address only block tool. Freaking HULU has one (pissed me off when I was in Japan for school, too!)

I believe Borepatch has won the thread for best comment, however.

Gerry N. said...

Some years ago I accumulated a small engine lathe. My first project was a falling block .22 cal. smoothbore pistol. As the only machinist training I've ever had was one semester of metal shop in the seventh grade in 1957. The pistol took me two days (16 hrs) and three tries on the breech block. No extractor or ejector. Chambered with a ground down twist drill and polished whith 1600 grit emery flour on a lead lap. At 25 yards my pistol will hit an object the size of a gallon can five times out of five. Too much fuss to make a single shot. Semi-auto coming soon. Actually simpler than a single shot.

Gerry N.

Gerry N. said...

Oops, I forgot.

"Put that in your pipes and suck on 'em, you dumbass congress-weasels."

Yore pal,

Gerry

Jennifer said...

The wheel is spinning but the hamster is dead.
I giggled maniacally when I heard that .gov had demanded the plans be removed from the internet. I envision a petulant child stamping his foot. Yeah, that'll work.

Rick Street said...

I will stick to my trusty Glock

Scott said...

Spammers in the wire, hit the Claymores!

Desert Shooter said...

The Home Gunsmith has an interesting PDF -- how to make your own fully automatic 9mm out of plumbing parts.
http://thehomegunsmith.com/pdf/BSP-SMG_Book.pdf

Theredneckengineer said...

With a clapped out bench lathe and some hand tools I built a .50 BMG rifle in my garage. It isn't the prettiest or the handiest (it weighs in around 30 pounds), but it does go BANG.
There isn't a whole lot to putting a controlled explosion inside a piece of pipe.

robert martin said...

the biggest problem with torrent is

1 there are about 12.6 brazillion trackers running about

2 it would be trivial to create a torrent of "60 years of Playboy" and sneak the plans into the file set

when these critters find this out the horror will look like http://www.schlockmercenary.com/2002-02-19

Scott said...

parley vous 'blocked IP list', spammers?

Jim March said...

I went to a "hackerspace" in Tucson AZ and ended up with a revolver that eats out of magazines and auto-gas-ejects empty shells...a feed system never before seen in a personal arm, ever, and whose only relative is some of the early 20mm and 30mm autocannons of the jet fighter age (1950s tech) based off an unused captured prototype found in an actual Nazi mad scientist's lab :)

Main tool used: a 1953 Logan 11" lathe with a busted reverse gear :).

Go to youtube and look for "maurice the frankenruger".

It's named "Maurice" because some people call it the space cowboy...and I hope to God I never have to shoot anybody with it because the DA would have a serious "WTF moment"...

Evyl Robot Michael said...

VERY well said! I just explained similar to one of my good friends who is more central/left leaning than me. This changes nothing. It simply adds new tools to the process.

Comrade Misfit said...

3rd world blacksmith with a charcoal fire, hand tools, and a donkey make perfectly-functional copies of late 19th Century and early 20th Century rifles and pistols

Can't believe nobody's asked what the donkey had to do with it.

So I'm asking.

Stan Burton said...

Ran the bellows more than likely....