The new John Waynes – and their 3D printers

It’s the wild, wild West all over again. This time the cowboys aren’t loading up those Winchesters, they’re crowded around the printer while their new 3D gun prints.
The world’s first DIY 3D gun was fired in May of this year by Cody. Not Buffalo Bill Cody, but 25 year-old Cody Wilson, founder of Defense Distributed. And the shot heard round the world, whether or not you paid attention, is one that is about to revolutionize life as we know it.
3D printers are not some futuristic fiction; they’re here now. What’s more, the price tag that once read $30,000 is now affordable for almost all cowpokes at about $1,200. Called Cubify Cube 3D Printer, it claims to work right out of the box, no user training required.

The mind blowing possibilities of this new technology stand to change medicine, art, science, engineering, and well, just about every other area of our lives.

I mean, after you get past the novelty of printing your own cell phone case, shoes, toys and gadgets, think about how a print-your-own-kidney could make those organ donation waiting lists obsolete. Wake Forest’s Institute for Regenerative Medicine is working on that solution right now, using a small tissue sample from the patient to “seed” the printer. The printing process currently takes about 7 hours, but 7 hours vs. unknown months of waiting for a new kidney? No brainer.

In fact, the 5 most promising uses of 3D printing in the area of medicine, according to Think Progress are:

1. Cutting down on the backlogged kidney transplant list.
2. Printing entirely new organs for diabetes patients.
3. Grafting skin for burn victims.
4. Designing and printing prostheses that fit and work better.
5. Printing in orthodontics, making dental care more affordable for everyone.

Let’s hope somebody somewhere is working overtime to figure out a way hackers can’t get into these 3D software programs! Yikes.

Want your very own 3D printer? It’s even available on Amazon!

The software for printing your own gun? You’ll have to talk to Cody about that. In the meantime, you could check out the 3D Printing (For Dummies), no kidding.

And investment opportunities? My money is on this new technology.


Rhonda Burns writes for and blogs for the North Florida Spine and Wellness Institute in Tallahassee, Florida. She is also author of 30 Ways to Effectively Market Your Business, available on Amazon Kindle.

Rhonda Burns
Rhonda Burns writes for and blogs for the North Florida Spine and Wellness Institute in Tallahassee, Florida. She is also author of 30 Ways to Effectively Market Your Business, available on Amazon Kindle.