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World's First 3-D-Printed Gun Fired In Texas

The firm behind the gun plans to make the blueprints available online.

A gun made with 3-D printer technology has been successfully fired in the U.S. The weapon, which was tested on a gun range near Austin, Texas, is the work of a firm called Defense Distributed, and is almost completely made of ABS plastic, using an $8,000 3-D printer bought on eBay. Only the firing pin is made of metal.

The development has already met with some controversy, with anti-gun campaigners worried that the weapons will fall into the wrong hands and be used by criminals, the mentally ill, and even children.

"I recognize that the tool might be used to harm other people. It is what it is—it's a gun," says Cody Wilson of Defense Distributed. Wilson had to get a manufacturing and seller's licence from the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) before he could print the weapon.

What do you think—is this a sign of progress or is extra legislation, such as the Undetectable Firearms Act proposed by congressman Steve Israel, needed?