As you may have heard, the US government recently reached a settlement on a lawsuit related to 3D printed guns. The outcome of the settlement is it becomes legal to post 3D printable files for the fabrication of firearms online starting August 1.
At 3Diligent, we take very seriously our responsibility to ensure that CAD-based digital-manufacturing technologies such as 3D printing (sometimes referred to as additive manufacturing) are used appropriately. That is why we have a live engineer review every file that comes across our web portal before we quote or fulfill a job.
Historically, we have focused on ensuring design files we are sending for fabrication do not infringe upon existing copyrights, however, this news means our responsibility has grown.
We believe strongly in the importance of traceable firearms as a means of deterring criminal and terrorist activity. We are disappointed at what this settlement potentially means to the safety and security of law-abiding citizens who choose either not to arm themselves or are willing to procure legal firearms through traditional, appropriately regulated channels.
Regardless of what is becoming legally permissible, it is 3Diligent’s official position that we will not facilitate the printing of any 3D printed guns or gun parts designed to circumvent the Undetectable Firearms Act. To do so would not be aligned to 3Diligent’s mission, vision, and values as an organization.
We call on other 3D printing and digital-manufacturing service providers to join us in making this commitment. We also call on our elected officials to pass appropriate legislation to close this loophole before August 1.
Lastly, we encourage an ongoing discussion of this topic. The digital-manufacturing revolution is dependent on ensuring the safe and appropriate use of digital-manufacturing technologies, and we welcome the opportunity to participate in the conversation.