- The Washington Times - Friday, November 8, 2013

The whole 3-D printer debate has just been taken to an entirely new level, as a company in Texas announced Friday it has made a metal gun from the equipment, a first for the technology.

Solid Concepts, a manufacturer of specialty items, posted a claim on its company blog that it successfully fired more than 50 rounds from the handgun it created, CNN reported.

The blog said the printed device was accurate, hitting the center of a target several times from ranges of 30 yards.

The printed pistol is a replica of an M1911, a weapon that was widely used between 1899 and 1902, during the Philippine-American War, the company said. It was constructed from 33 different metal parts; its handle is carbon-fiber, carved by laser, CNN said.

“The 3-D printed metal gun proves that 3-D printing isn’t just making trinkets and Yoda heads,” the company said in its blog.

Still, we’re not talking readily accessible, Walmart-sold printers here. As the company said: “This is not about desktop 3-D printers,” CNN reported.

“The industrial printer we used costs more than my college tuition (and I went to a private university),” said Alyssa Parkinson, a company spokeswoman, on the blog. “And the engineers who run our machines are top of the line; they are experts who know what they’re doing and understand 3-D printing better than anyone in this business.”

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