Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s “assault” weapons ban is now officially DOA, but it didn’t matter that much in the grand scheme of things. She and her ilk can try banning whatever they want, but technology has run miles ahead of them. Defense Distributed, the group behind 3D printing of firearms, now has its federal firearms license.
Wilson sent the application to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in October. According to Ars Technica, the process, which usually can take as little as 60 days, took about six months for Wilson.
Defense Distributed has been creating prototypes of 3-D guns and magazine clips for months. In February, the project released a video displaying the success of a new magazine that holds 30 bullets for an AR-15 rifle. In total the magazine fired 342 bullets, Wired reported. The group fired “227 of those rounds using full automatic fire, while swapping out the barrels on the rifle to keep them cool,” Wired said.
Cody Wilson published a statement saying “No prototype we print or test will ever be sold or given to another person. And nothing we create as a part of this project is for sale.” The FFL plus an add-on he has filed for would open up sales possibilities in the future. Based on the talk he delivered at SXSW, though, the license seems to be less about sales than it is about making sure that he stays on the right side of the law and within the ATF’s graces.