Mere days after Defense Distributed released the design documents for the world’s first (nearly) completely 3D-printable firearm, the files have begun being removed from the group’s main site at the request of federal authorities.

Currently a banner at the top of, which hosts the files for the group’s printable firearm designs, informs visitors that files are being removed “at the request of the US Department of Defense Trade Controls.” Some parts of the website are presently locked from public access and the website is intermittently unavailable at the time of this writing.

“Until further notice, the United States government claims control of the information,” the message reads.

Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson told that he has decided to comply with the department’s request to remove the files while the group considers legal options.

“We got an official letter from the Secretary of State, telling me who they were, what their authority was under U.S. law and telling me they want to review these files to see if they’re class one munitions,” Wilson said. “That includes blueprints.”

Wilson released the blueprints for a printable pistol dubbed the “Liberator” earlier this week, and already reporting over 100,000 downloads of the files. The single-shot .380 pistol is comprised of 16 ABS plastic parts and a metal nail for a firing pin. The plastic components can all be reproduced through the use of a capable 3D printer, a significant breakthrough for the technology. Wilson successfully test-fired the pistol before the plans were released.

Some lawmakers responded critically to the firearm, believing that a gun that can be manufactured almost entirely at home will circumvent a number of current laws. New York Congressman Steve Israel (D-NY) released a statement following the pistol’s introduction, expressing his concerns and calling for stricter laws against plastic guns. Recently a new bill, H.R. 1474, was introduced to the U.S. House of Representatives’ Judiciary Committee that would ban plastic firearms and magazines. The bill would extend the Undetectable Firearms Act of 1988 and throw a sizable wrench in Defense Distributed’s plans by specifically mentioning and limiting 3D printed firearms.

Representative Israel, who sponsored the bill, said it would ban the manufacture, use, transport, purchase, and sale of any firearm that is not detectable by x-rays or metal detectors.

“When I started talking about the issue of plastic firearms months ago, I was told the idea of a plastic gun is science-fiction,” Isreal said. “ Now that this technology appears to be upon us, we need to act now to extend the ban on plastic firearms.”

Wilson remains unfazed.

“I still think we win in the end,” he told Betabeat. “Because the files are all over the Internet, the Pirate Bay has it–to think this can be stopped in any meaningful way is to misunderstand what the future of distributive technologies is about.”

Wilson is a staunch Second Amendments advocate and a second-year law student. He founded Defense Distributed as a non-profit organization to catalog and distribute designs for 3D printable firearm parts, which Wilson believes is the next step in supporting the right to bear arms and promoting free speech.

“This is a much bigger deal than guns,” Wilson said. “It has implications for the freedom of the web.”

You can see Wilson test-fire the Liberator below.


You can learn more about Defense Distributed’s plans here.

Additional information on H.R. 1474 can be found here.

Image screenshot of video by DXLiberty on YouTube

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6 thoughts on “Files Removed from 3D-printed Gun Site

  1. On rare occasion I agree with the current government’s stance on gun control.

    As the internet is widely open, we don’t need to be offering blue prints to terrorists who are intent on using any and all means to destroy lives.

    Unless this company is willing to accept all financial responsibility for the wrongful death suits that will ensure as a result of folks making guns using their plans, etc… then this should be taken down.

    Certain things are not protected by the Constitution…

    Yelling FIRE in a crowded movie house…is not acceptable.

    Providing licensed technology in violation of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations to persons unknown is or should also not be acceptable.

    Folks have been building guns in their basements for 100 years. That’s how new designs, improvements in technology , etc… takes place.

    It is not against the law for a person to build a gun for personal use. But if the person relies on a third party to provide schematics, engineering drawings, and the knowledge… then they are not building the gun by ‘themselves’.

    While I think every American needs to build or buy a firearm to keep so that Uncle Sam will always be kept in check. I believe this is not the way to achieve that goal.

    1. bro, You obviously have no idea that “terrorists” in Pakistan and the hindu kush mountains MAKE guns from scratch right? They take a real ak and take it apart to use as a template. Like chunks of steel turn into aks, look it up before you look like a tard again…

      1. Toast, I don’t understand what your example has to do with Paladin’s comment, especially since he already said “Folks have been building guns in their basements for 100 years.” It’s not as if you’re somehow capitulating or “giving in” just by saying “hey maybe online gun plans and 3D printers isn’t the safest combo in the world. There’s a certain point at which the concept of “freedom” must run alongside and not before the concept of REASON. Citizens enjoy freedom because they agree to be reasonable, not because they really think freedom means you can print your own gun or get the blueprints for a ballistic missile… Sure I like my handgun. Because I didn’t build it myself, just like how my car actually runs PRECISELY because I wasn’t the one who built or repaired it. I just don’t think it’s one of those issues for the gun guys to get behind because even though the idea is cool and we’d all love to print, shoot and throw away a plastic gun, the reality is that the whole idea is pretty sketchy, this Wilson guy – I’m sure he’s a great guy in person – is basically crazy. The old punk rocker in me wants to get behind him but the reasonable suburban dad wants to just put him out of business. And tanning salons.

  2. Sounds like we are blaming the gun and not the person attitude again, gun makers i.e. PaladinFirearms sees his $$$ walking away and uses this excuse of “financial responsibility for the wrongful death suits” as a reason to stop him, look at your own words “Folks have been building guns in their basements for 100 years”, sounds like a repeat of our basic rights, check our “Constitution” for the right and wrong of what the “Plastic” gun maker is doing, repeating our historical past… We have plethora of laws to stop the bad guys, why don’t we just use those laws for the person who uses any gun wrongfully and stop with “Controlling everyone”…

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