September 23rd, 2019

Quick-Release Mirage Shield with Front/Rear Attachments

mirage shield tab hook barrel mount urban rifleman

Forum member UrbanRifleman is a talented parts designer and 3D-printing specialist who has developed a series of useful products for shooters. One of the cool items UrbanRifleman produces is a quick-release “snap-on” mirage shield. The shield has tabs on each end. These tabs snap into plastic fittings front and rear. Here’s a video showing how it works:

The mirage shield attaches via front and rear quick-release fittings. In the back there’s a rail-mounted hook. In the front, at the muzzle end, is a 3D-printed ring clamp that fits the barrel precisely. These muzzle rings are tailored to the barrel diameters in a variety of diameters: 0.625″, 0.75″, 0.85″, 0.90″, 0.95″, 1.0″, 1.25″, and 1.50″. The front barrel-end clamp it shown at top. Below is the rear attachment, mounted on the Picatinny-type scope rail.

mirage shield tab hook barrel mount urban rifleman

Satisfied Customer Praised this Shield Kit
One of our Forum members recently bought this quick-to-attach Mirage Shield and was very impressed: “I bought the Snap-on Mirage Shield from UrbanRifleman for my F-Class rifle. It worked so well I just ordered two more. Not only does it work well, it gets rid of the ugly and looks professional.” — BigJohn

You can order the Mirage Shield from UrbanRifleman on the Forum. The cost for the kit, which includes the Mirage Shield attachment fittings, is $29.00 for one or $50.00 for two units. As noted, the rear fitting clamps to a standard Picatinny-type scope rail. Up front is a plastic mount that clamps around the end of the barrel. You’ll need to specify your barrel diameter. You can see more photos on eBay, where you can purchase direct.

mirage shield tab hook barrel mount urban rifleman

The Kit includes all parts needed to assemble a Picatinny-mounted mirage kit:

(1) Barrel-end front clamp with hardware (specific to barrel diameter)
(1) Picatinny rear mount with hardware
(1) Elastic Mesh 3″ x 30″ long
(2) Hangars
(2) Hooks

NOTE: This kit requires some assembly. Cut mesh to length, allowing for a few inches of stretch. Cut the ends square and glue them into the hangars with Elmer’s glue or similar adhesive. Then tape and let dry.

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September 20th, 2016

3D Metal Printed Rimfire Receiver from New Zealand

Rimfire .22 LR Receiver action 3D Printer Printing custom action New Zealand 40X PT&G

Here’s something truly innovative — a 3D-printed metal rimfire receiver!

Forum member Marcos G. (aka MFP_BOP) has designed and created his own rimfire action. But it’s not machined or forged. This new action was created with a 3D sintered metal printer. A 3D modeler by profession, Marcos has the requisite skill set and access to a very high-tech (and expensive) metal printer. As printed, the actual receiver is shown below. It has just been sent out to be age-hardened to 40 HRC, after which final finish work (e.g. cleaning up tenon threads) will be done. To learn more about this 3D-printing project, read this FORUM Thread.

Rimfire .22 LR Receiver action 3D Printer Printing custom action New Zealand 40X PT&G

When most of us think of 3D printing, we think of small plastic parts — nothing as strong as steel. But there are 3D printers that employ sintered metal to build complex metal components. Marcus says the receiver he’s created should have “stated yield and tensile strength similar to investment casting.” The material used for the action is 15-5 PH® Stainless Steel (in sintered form).

The action was designed to use a PT&G 40X rimfire bolt. Marcos notes that “There is an extraction cam inside of the action, something that would be very hard or impossible to do by regular machining and/or EDM.”

Born in Brazil, Marcos now lives in New Zealand. He tell us that: “New Zealand is a very gun-friendly country. I just need my A-CAT license to make [a receiver.]” So there are no special legal restrictions (as might apply in the USA). The printer is EOS270 laser metal sintering machine. Marcos says: “The current price for one of those machines is in five figures, but I am 99.99% sure that in 5-7 years this technology will be readily available to anyone.”

As designed, the receiver was 1.4″ in diameter. Marcos reports it came out of the printer at 1.403″. The designed boltway is .690″ and it came out .687″. Marcos notes: “I haven’t noticed any warping. The threads are rough, really! Interior and exterior finishes are really good though, probably because of the way it’s been printed: upside down (must have gone through tumbling afterwards). I will have to run some taps and single-point-cut the tenon threads to clean them up.”

Rimfire .22 LR Receiver action 3D Printer Printing custom action New Zealand 40X PT&G

Marcos says the actual printing process took a lot of time: “I should have asked how long it took to be printed!” But consider this, the 7″-long receiver is created in layers only 20 microns thick, so you can understand why the process took so long.

Reasons to Print a Rimfire Receiver
Marcos 3D-printed his own action basically to save money: “Some may be asking why I printed this receiver. Here’s a little history… I tried different ways to bring a Stiller 2500X action into New Zealand. The final price to my door was NZ $3000.00 (about $2195.00 USD). Designing and making one would be way cheaper, but I felt nobody here could machine the internal abutments with precision. Also printing was still a little cheaper and printing offered the chance to put in it all details I wanted — such as M4 threads, internal cam, and fillets.”

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November 9th, 2013

Future Tech: 3D Metal Printing of Gun Parts and 1911 Pistol

Could your next metal scope rings, trigger guard, or muzzle brake be crafted with a 3D printing process? It’s possible. In fact, a wide variety of metal parts (even a complete handgun) can be printed using the latest 3D Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) process. The way this works is as follows: powdered metal is heated by a laser, causing the metal particles to fuse and solidify. This is progressively repeated, in vertically-stacked layers, until the entire metal part is complete. It’s like building a metal layer cake with the shape/size of each thin layer defined by a precise laser beam. The laser is guided by computer-controlled servos following a CAD “blueprint”.

This video demonstrates how metal parts are 3D printed using the DMLS process. This technology is offered by Solid Concepts, a leading rapid prototyping and manufacturing services company.

The Solid Concepts 1911 — World’s First 3D-Printed Metal Firearm

Solid Concepts has manufactured the world’s first 3D-printed metal gun using a laser sintering process and powdered metals. The gun, a .45 acp 1911 clone, has already handled 50 rounds of successful live-fire testing. A 1911 design was chosen because the “blueprint” is public domain. The gun is composed of thirty-three, 17-4 Stainless Steel and Inconel 625 components, crafted through the DMLS process. Even the carbon fiber-filled hand grips are 3D printed, using a Selective Laser Sintered (SLS) process.

3D metal printing 1911 DMLS Solid Concepts

Except for the springs, all the parts of this 1911 handgun were printed using the metal laser sintering process. Yes even the highly-polished slide, the barrel, the frame, and the hammer were printed. There are no forgings, castings, or conventionally-machined parts. With the exception of springs, all 30+ components in this prototype pistol were printed using Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) technology. Watch the video for a glimpse into the future of gun-making:

World’s First 3D-Printed Metal Gun Test Firing

Solid Concepts believes that its fully-functional, 3D-printed 1911 handgun proves the viability of 3D printing for gun parts, even highly-stressed components. Kent Firestone, V.P. of Additive Manufacturing at Solid Concepts, states: “We’re proving this is possible, the technology is at a place now where we can manufacture a gun with 3D metal printing. And we’re doing this legally. In fact, as far as we know, we’re the only 3D printing service provider with a Federal Firearms License (FFL). Now, if a qualifying customer needs a unique gun part in five days, we can deliver.”

3D metal printing 1911 DMLS Solid Concepts

Will we see complete 3D-printed metal guns on the market soon? That’s unlikely. It’s still more economical to produce complete guns the old-fashioned way. However, we may see 3D printing used for rapid prototyping. In addition, 3D metal printing has advantages for hard-to-machine parts with complex geometries. Solid Concepts reports that its 3D printed metal has fewer porosity issues than an investment cast part and better complexities than a machined part. It will be interesting to see what unfolds in the years ahead.

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