One Portage business owner says it's scary to realize what can be produced today by the common person.
A few days ago, the RCMP made a traffic stop and found a 3D-printed gun in a man's possession in Winnipeg. 3D printers are available to anyone, and have been evolving and becoming increasingly more capable of creating 3-dimensional objects. They use filaments that comprise the material the object is made of.
The filament melts in the machine so that it can be shaped into any given desired object.
Wade Duncan of McDonald's Sporting Goods says it's a scary thing to know that people can actually make operable guns at home using 3D printers.
"Basically, people buy these printers and they can make whatever they want to make," says Duncan. "It's not the legal channel. It's probably not being used for the proper purposes if you're making illegal stuff. Maybe, if there was a way to make them and legally register them, that might be a little bit different. But with the phase we're in now in Canada, you can't transfer ownership of restricted firearms, anyway. It seems like if they're doing it, it's for the wrong purpose, I would say."
He explains no current manufacturers with whom he deals are actually producing 3d-printed guns for sale.
"The companies that we deal with are big brand names established," notes Duncan. "I don't know how you get around it. How do you stop that? When there are people buying 3D printers to make other stuff, all of a sudden, they turn that production method for a bad reason. That's not the way the world should be."
Duncan says, unfortunately, you can see this in countless examples of people creating things they're not supposed to be creating.
"In my opinion, the laws don't have much in terms of bite, or letting people out of jails and slapping people on the wrists," continues Duncan. "I don't see any deterrent to a lot of this stuff. They're 100 per cent functional. The worry for the future is, literally, you can YouTube anything and find out how to make anything in this world. That's sort of scary. I mean, obviously, a lot of stuff is for good or for home use, things like that. But a lot of the stuff, people are not using it for the right reasons. I just don't know a way you can prevent that and stop that in the future. I don't know what the future holds in that regard."
He notes no one has ever approached him about purchasing a 3D-printed gun up to this point.