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3D printed AR lower receiver doesn't meet expectations

One of the more interesting technologies for creating rapid prototypes and other items is 3D printing. 3D printing is capable of producing just about anything you can imagine from implantable cartilage for medical uses, to prototype parts and even weapons.

A project called Defense Distributed has been working on 3D printer files that allow users to create components to build their own guns using a 3D printer. A group of testers used a 3D printed gun part design from creator HaveBlue to produce an AR lower receiver (the lower receiver is a key component of the weapon that receives the rifle cartridge from the magazine) and headed to the gun range.

Unfortunately, it appears that recoil pressure in the completed weapon was too much for the buffer section of the 3D printed lower. The buffer is a section that separates the stock from the upper receiver reports NBC News. The part failed after firing only six shots. To make the failure even more embarrassing, the testers were using ammunition specifically designed for lower recoil.
 
The creator of the part claims to have printed his own and used it to fire hundreds of rounds.
 
While the firearm breaking in half while in operation seems to offer the potential for harm to the shooter and those nearby, the testers say that the only damage the operator faces is that of ego. When the weapon failed, the spring and buffer popped out of the tube and fell to the ground according to the testers.

Sources: NBC News, WikiWep DevBlog



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By H0rnet on 12/6/2012 4:31:10 PM , Rating: 3
From my understanding of the 3d printing process this is very true currently. At least the models I have seen have been very delicate. However there are newer technologies that are based on laser sintering, where metal powder is used as a feed stock. It's still a more high end process, and the equipment is much more expensive currently.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=88BPmL8cGAo


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