So, you want to know more about 3D printed Firearms?
With the recent political environment and legislation and the availability of affordable and easily acquired 3D printers on the market today, there has been a lot of interest in this subject. One of the major questions is, “How do I get started?”
Luckily, there has been great strides in the 3D printed firearm space in terms of development and
support, from the availability of files for a great number of platforms, to companies that now produce
parts kits for not only the metal components, but the associated hardware needed to complete the
These printed firearms are also growing in ease of production, reliability, and customization as well.
Which leads to further innovation and sometimes, just plain silliness. So where do we begin. There is a
great Iowa native who goes by the name CTRL+Pew who was one of the major players in advancing and
publicizing 3D Printed firearms and he has completed a very comprehensive guide on exactly this
Once you get a printer and get to know it, there are many places to obtain different files, designs, and if
you are crafty or have CAD skills, even participate in beta programs to try out new designs and give
Currently, there are designs available for AR-15s, AR-9s, AR-10s, PCCs, PDWs, 37mm launchers (beta),
AKs, Hi-Points (who would want to though), Sig P365s, 1911s, Hi-Powers, and more.
Also available, is the FGC-9 (Fuck Gun Control – 9) which is a 9mm pistol designed to be completely built
using off the shelf components and can be built in countries and regions where strict gun control laws
exist. The creator, JSTARK a German resident, passed away in 2021, and for those with the tin-foil-hats,
it could be construed as a mysterious death as he was reported to have a heart attack at the age of 28.
The FGC-9 documentation includes instructions on not only the printed components, but also how to
create your own rifled barrel using Electrochemical Machining (ECM ) in your bathtub.
Information on the FGC-9 and many other designs can be found at the Gatalog: https://thegatalog.com/
To manage some expectations regarding the 3DP firearm world there’s a few things to keep in mind:
3DP firearms are not meant to replace factory built and sold firearms, though many
designs have seen round counts in the 1000s there are many variables and other things
to consider when it comes to durability and reliability.
If you are new, don’t expect to unbox your printer, print a test calibration, and then
print out a fully functional and flawless firearm. There is a learning curve when printing
and you’ll need some time to get to know your printer, dial in the settings, and educate
yourself on different materials and what those materials are good at and more
importantly, what they are not.
There are A LOT of variables to 3D printing. Although in the past decade there have
been insane improvements to the machine and software quality, 3D printing is still an
imperfect process. You will have failures, problems, and frustrations along the way.
Know your laws! Though we are blessed for most of us to live in a country where
manufacturing our own firearms is a protected right, there are some places where these
freedoms are limited and as such, these printers are capable of manufacturing things
which can land you in some hot water. That being said, a popular slogan by Deterrence
Dispensed is “You can’t stop the signal!” Glowies (aka. Feds) have also been known to
message people posting on social media regarding their projects and request them to
print or manufacture parts for them which is against federal law. These prints are
generally only able to be printed and retained by the individual who owns the
All-in-all 3D printing is a great hobby and is a great skill to learn, especially paired with CAM design like
Fusion 360 (free for hobbyists). You can design and print not only pew related items, but many other
things in your life. My family has frequently requested I print things for them for not only the cool
factor, but for organization, accessibility (jar/can openers for people with limited use of their hands),
hard to find parts, and toys.
There is a ton of support out there for anyone wanting to learn, from Facebook, Twitter, and our own
LSLF crew who have experience in printing and design work. Just ask!
Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, nor do I provide legal advice, written or implied. Know your local laws and
regulations and contact a licensed attorney if you have any questions.