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posted by CoolHand on Tuesday October 03 2017, @04:08PM   Printer-friendly
from the gotta-have-guns dept.

The Ghost Gunner has been updated to allow the CNC milling of a much more popular and accessible form of firearm: a handgun:

For the past five years, Cody Wilson has applied every possible advance in digital manufacturing technology to the mission of undermining government attempts at gun control. First he created the world's first 3-D printed gun, a deadly plastic weapon anyone could print at home with a download and a few clicks. Then he started selling a computer-controlled milling machine designed to let anyone automatically carve out the body of an untraceable AR-15 from a semifinished chunk of aluminum, upgrading his provocations from plastic to metal. Now his latest advance in home firearm fabrication allows anyone to make an object designed to defy the most basic essence of gun control: A concealable, untraceable, and entirely unregulated metal handgun.

On Sunday, Wilson's gun rights advocacy group, Defense Distributed, announced a new release of software for his computer-controlled milling machine known as the Ghost Gunner. The new code allows the 1-foot-cubed tabletop machine—which uses a spinning bit to carve three-dimensional shapes with minute precision—to not only produce untraceable bodies of AR-15s but to carve out the aluminum frame of an M1911 handgun, the popular class of semiautomatic pistols that includes the Colt 45 and similar weapons. Wilson says he plans to follow up soon with software for producing regulation-free Glocks and other handgun models to follow.

Wilson's goal now, he says, is to do for small arms what Defense Distributed did for AR-15s when it first released the $1,500 Ghost Gunner milling machine exactly three years ago to the day: Give people the ability to make a lethal weapon at home with no regulation whatsoever.

M1911 pistol.

This story came out before the mass shooting in Las Vegas, on the third anniversary of the initial release of the Ghost Gunner, just in case you were wondering.

Also at Ars Technica:

"It's a certain type of person who builds and enjoys an AR-15—that's a lot of gun, and most people don't feel the need to have a big ol' battle rifle," Wilson says. "But we believe lots of people are interested in the conversation about an untraceable, concealable handgun. It's been on the roadmap the whole time for this project. It's just always been a question of how we get there, and it ended up being very, very difficult—kinda like the brass ring of the project, if you will."

Previously: FedEx Refuses to Ship Defense Distributed's Ghost Gunner CNC Mill
Man Who Used CNC Mill to Manufacture AR-15 "Lowers" Sentenced to 41 Months


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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by takyon on Tuesday October 03 2017, @05:37PM (1 child)

    by takyon (881) <{takyon} {at} {soylentnews.org}> on Tuesday October 03 2017, @05:37PM (#576687) Journal

    The Ghost Gunner isn't a general-purpose CNC mill.

    https://www.ammoland.com/2017/03/ghost-gunner-2-gun-making-machine-review/ [ammoland.com]

    Everything about the Ghost Gunner 2 is open source. The source code for the DDCut software can be downloaded and modified from the Ghost Gunner 2 website. Also if the user is familiar with G-Code it will open up things such as engraving, or even using the Ghost Gunner 2 for non firearms projects. This machine is much more than advertised. It is a fully functional CNC machine.

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  • (Score: 4, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 03 2017, @06:51PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 03 2017, @06:51PM (#576728)

    Yeah, and it's great that they don't restrict things any further, but you're still stuck with the mechanical limitations of something designed around finishing 80% receivers.

    I'm a machinist, and I use general-purpose CNC mills daily. The ones we have are much bigger, but I've seen a few tabletop general-purpose mills as well, and none of them look like the Ghost Gunner. You design things one way for general purpose machining; a different way for only doing light finish operations on near-net blanks with mass-produced fixturing.

    I'll admit I've never seen a Ghost Gunner in person (I'd have bought one, except I already have access to real machines at work for personal projects), but from the pictures and videos I've seen, neither the work envelope nor the rigidity look like what I'd expect in a tabletop CNC mill. It may well be more rigid than it looks, but I'm pretty sure the work envelope is exactly what it looks like, and it's very limited because of the choice to make the enclosure serve as the machine base. It's designed for a purpose, and it's a pretty good design for that purpose, but it's just not general-purpose.