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Old 02-02-2013, 12:04   #1
Dizzy Beaver
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Questions about Desert Eagles

I've been doing a lot of thinking over the past few weeks about my next gun. For a long time I've wanted a .454 Casull. I shot a Taurus .454 Casull revolver years ago and it was a lot of fun. I don't particularly care for the grips on revolvers, though, as they just feel very awkward in my hand. I also don't like how much gas comes out between the cylinder and barrel and think that an automatic would be "safer" from that perspective.

So, I've been thinking about a Desert Eagle in .50AE. I've never shot one and know little about them so I'm hoping the folks here can enlighten me.

I'm used to Glocks and how simple and reliable they are.

  • Are Desert Eagles reliable?
  • Do they break often or require excessive care/maintenance to keep them operating well?
  • Are Desert Eagles easy to clean?
  • Under normal circumstances (barring today's crazy environment), how much do extra magazines run?
  • How much does .50AE ammo run and how easy is it to find? Are there many manufacturers making it?


Last edited by Dizzy Beaver; 02-02-2013 at 12:04..
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Old 02-03-2013, 01:02   #2
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I have had a DE in .50AE for almost 10 years now. So far it has been a great pistol. It serves absolutely no purpose other than the 'look what I got' factor of it. The trigger on it is great. It has been very reliable as long as I feed it hot enough loads for it to cycle (had a problem with some of my handloads at first being a little weak for 100% function).

The ammo has always been fairly spendy. When I was buying factory ammo for it when I first got it (roughly 10 years now) it was around a $1 a round. I am sure it is way more now. If you want to shoot it a lot, you better be well heeled or reload for it.

I only have two mags that it came with. I am not sure why anyone would want anymore than that. After sending two mags full downrange you are not going to want to keep plugging away with it, you are going to want a break. The mags only hold seven rounds... so I dont think they would be on the hit list for any magazine ban craziness.

As for cleaning it. I find it to be a PITA. I have the polished stainless version, and the carbon buildup takes a lot of elbow grease to get it off the finish. The gas system seems to keep itself clean enough to work, it is not overly complex. Complete teardown is not too bad, not much more complex than a Berretta 92 with an AR bolt assembly.

All in all. It is a cool gun, but it is very limited in uses. Some people hunt with them. It would make a dandy boat anchor. Has more steel in it than most new cars.
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Old 02-03-2013, 17:26   #3
Dizzy Beaver
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Thank you for the response. When I posted, I didn't now that it was gas blowback design, so I'm sure cleaning would take a bit of effort. I watched some videos on breakdown and cleaning. It looks like cleaning would be similar to cleaning an AR.

My primary purpose for wanting one would be because it would be fun to shoot. I loved shooting the .454. I'd also consider hunting with it, but mostly it would be a fun range gun. I might be at Cabela's tomorrow so perhaps I'll check one out if they have one in stock.
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Old 02-03-2013, 17:52   #4
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Make sure you handle it first. Semi auto cannons like the DE generally have very large grips. Not suitable for all hands.

LAR Grizzlies are a nice cannon option but as they are no longer made they are hard to find. If you happen to run into a reasonablely priced one check it out.
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Old 02-04-2013, 03:39   #5
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Gas operated is not the same as blowback, at all.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:41   #6
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Originally Posted by Myself View Post
Make sure you handle it first. Semi auto cannons like the DE generally have very large grips. Not suitable for all hands.

LAR Grizzlies are a nice cannon option but as they are no longer made they are hard to find. If you happen to run into a reasonablely priced one check it out.
Spot on! The DE has a huge grip so hold one before you drop the big money that they cost. The DEs have polygonal rifling and a gas recoil system so no cast bullets... They use a rotating bolt lockup system similar to the M16. In my opinion if you aren't a handloader the .50ae isn't for you. Ammo is rather scarce and when you do find it its pricey.

The 454 is more powerful than the .50ae so maybe look at the ruger 454 or a single action like the bfr which I think have better grips than the raging buill. If you want more power still and are willing to put up with the weight of the DE you can get the .500 s&w revolver which has a better grip than the raging bull. Ammo for the .500 is still pricey but more people make it and you have more options from mild to wild with the 500.

Don't get me wrong i think the DE is a very cool pistol but unless you are dead set on an autoloader there are better options for big powers handguns. I have a 475 bfr and love it. It's fairly light and portable and i can shoot nice 44 mag level loads up to hurt my hand surpass 454 power rounds.

Last edited by ss30378; 02-04-2013 at 10:43.. Reason: fat finger
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Old 02-04-2013, 12:58   #7
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The Deagle is hands down the coolest, most fun firearm I have ever shot! Hands down!

They are fairly reliable, but, imho, not carry reliable, or for that matter not relegated to any real defensive duty. You won't find mine in my night stand either. Hunting? Definitively a great choice to fill that niche . And, I am talking the 44 magnum!

The design, is one of the easiest, and best around, which makes cleaning a piece of cake!

In summation, there has never been a cooler weapon for the theater, and they are flat cool to own. If nightstand, carry, depend on your life, is the niche being filled, you can make a better choice. IMHO If you are choosing for a hunting firearm, again, imho, there are better choices to be made.

On the other hand, if you want the coolest firearm, I've ever shot? Get the Deagle. You will be pleased!
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Old 02-04-2013, 14:31   #8
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Love my DE in .44 mag. I don't pack it for bear protection though. The Ruger Redhawk in .44 mag with HOT hand loads gets the nod most of the time, with the Freedom Arms .454 Casull taking up the rest of that duty. DE get taken down to my gravel pit, or other suitable place, when I get the urge to burn up a hundred or more rounds.

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Old 02-13-2013, 12:58   #9
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It's a LOT of fun to shoot and cleaning isn't all that bad if you keep up with it. The gun breaks down very easily.

I got mine in 44 as it is a lot cheaper (even with reloads) than 50.

Recoil is fairly mild considering what you're shooting.

Most important factors for reliability are 1) how you are holding the gun; 2) ammo that you are using; and 3) keeping it cleaned & lubed.

Get one and enjoy!
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:56   #10
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I've had one in 50AE for several years now and never had an issue with it.

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