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'Ghost Gunner' Makes Homemade Guns Easier, Cheaper, Faster

The makers of the world's first 3-D printed handgun have unveiled a new device that makes it easier and cheaper to create homemade handguns.
Posted at 7:29 AM, Oct 02, 2014

The makers of the world's first 3-D printed handgun have unveiled a new device that makes it easier and cheaper to create homemade firearms. 

It's called a "Ghost Gunner." It's a small milling machine requiring very little user knowledge that cranks out design files of a lower receiver — or the area that holds a guns' operating parts — for an AR-15 assault rifle. It's not a new idea, but it's different in that it's much faster than similar devices.

CNET says "Ghost Gunner" chose the lower receiver in particular because "under US firearms laws, it's the one piece of the gun that's legally considered a firearm and carries the gun's serial number. Therefore, an AR-15 with a handmade lower receiver is completely untraceable." Essentially, a legal loophole.

In turn, according to its maker, Defense Distributed, the "Ghost Gunner can help you legally manufacture unserialized firearms in the comfort of your own home." 

And that statement holds up. Under the United States Gun Control Act of 1968, anyone can manufacture homemade guns without a license. You just can't sell or transfer them without one. Politicians who are gun-control advocates have made attempts to sideline their production.

California State Senator Kevin De Leon recently tried to push through legislation that would've put much tougher restrictions on "Ghost Guns" in the golden state.

But Governor Jerry Brown shot it down Tuesday. Brown said, "I appreciated the author's concerns about gun violence, but I can't see how adding a serial number to a homemade gun would significantly advance public safety."

The "Ghost Gunner" itself is the brainchild of Defense Distributed co-founder and self-proclaimed crypto-anarchist Cody Wilson. "There's not time for hope, there's no reason for fear and we need only to think of new weapons."

Wilson created the first 3-D printable plastic gun called "The Liberator" two years ago. His projects have been described as "radically libertarian," and Wilson wants to take the issue of gun control out of politicians' hands. (Video via ReasonTV)

CODY WILSON: "I'm not interested in creating a product to be consumed. I'm interested in, again, like changing the coordinates of certain political realities. One that's close to my heart and the hearts of my partners is the gun issue in America."

As you can imagine, for an issue as sensitive as control gun, Wilson has his detractors.

In fact, Wired named him one of the "15 Most Dangerous Peoplein the World" in 2012.

GLENN BECK: "All you really do is hit print. You download it and you hit print."
CODY WILSON: "This is an alternative way of manufacturing things and really takes out all expert required knowledge."

"The Ghost Gunner" website says it will retail for less than $1,500. Wilson also told CNET the machine is so fast it can produce "one lower receiver per hour at the production output of a machine 10 times its cost."

This video includes an image from DECENTRAL / CC BY NC SA 2.0.