More Reasons to Dislike the Desert Eagle

They’re big, they’re really heavy, they don’t hold much more than their big and heavy revolver compliments. Also they jam ALL THE TIME. Its really to be expected, as the gun has a lot of recoil, and an action travel that’s REALLY long, so there’s a huge window for stovepipe jams, and enough muzzle-flip to facilitate it.

Well thinking that wasn’t enough Kahr posted videos of their Desert Eagles nearly jamming:

One without the brake almost does too! I wonder how many clips they had to junk because it showed expensive .50 AE brass getting chomped by the massive action of the gun?

Shootin’ Buddy said it best

The less somebody knows about guns, the more they want a derringer.

I would couple Desert Eagles into that. Before I owned guns I had SERIOUS gun lust for a Desert Eagle. Specifically one in brushed Nickle in .44 magnum. Hell even when I had an order screw-up and I got a box of .44 magnum dies, I kept them saying “These will come in handy when I get my Desert Eagle!”, I still have them!

Today, when I look at one, I can’t see the gun I had so much interest in.

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0 Responses to More Reasons to Dislike the Desert Eagle

  1. SGB says:

    The Pacer of handguns.

    • Weerd Beard says:

      SNERK! OK that’s funny!

      Oh and FYI I was brought home from the hospital in an AMC Pacer!

      When that sucker died Dad replaced it with an AMC Concord. Dad liked the AMCs before my family got into Fords and Japanese cars (and in this day that term is redundant)

  2. Greg Camp says:

    I’m with you on this one. With the money that I’d have to pay to buy one of those, I could get two revolvers in the same chambering and a lot of ammunition. And carrying those two revolvers concealed would be easier than lugging around that beast. Ballistically speaking, doesn’t .357 SIG get close to the .357 Magnum round? If so, a regular semiautomatic in that caliber would do everything that the Desert Eagle can do, and it would offer many more rounds on board.

    Now, someday I may get one when I have nothing else that I want, just because I like collecting oddball guns, but it would be a toy.

    • Weerd Beard says:

      .357 Sig only comes close to one .357 Magnum load (I believe it was the FBI issue load before they switched to auto-chuckers) but when you look at the loads you can cook up for the .357 Magnum, and the .357 Sig, the Sig doesn’t stand up (And that’s not even getting into the “Ruger Only” page of the load book!)

      In reality .357 SIG is generally a little more powerful than 9×19 +P loads, and about on-par with .38 Super Auto.

  3. Tam says:

    Every now and then, I get to thinking I wouldn’t mind one of the early ones in .357 Mag. The urge usually goes away after a bit…

    • bluesun says:

      Why not get a Coonan, instead?

      • Tam says:

        Either one would just be a range toy. The Mk I Deagle runs fine and shoots softer without looking dorky, like the Coonan.

        I’ve shot lots of Deagles, and two… no, three Coonans now.

        • Weerd Beard says:

          You think the Coonans look “Dorky”??

          I gotta say that digital Camoflage unit he’s been flashing at shows, and in Oleg’s pictures is a DAMN sexy gun.

          Desert Eagles look nice too, honestly, but I’ve become more and more attracted to the 1911 lines than more radical departures.

          • Tam says:

            I like the 1911 lines, but to my eye the Coonan does to the classic 1911 form what elephantiasis and hydrocephaly does to the human ditto. 😉

            Thank goodness they make all kinds of guns, no? 🙂

          • Weerd Beard says:

            But they don’t make a Volcanic Arms in .357 Magnum (or .44 would be my preference)….unless we can convince Wally or somebody equally as insane to do it….

    • Weerd Beard says:

      Yeah right now my “Desert Eagle” dream has been eclipsed by an M&P45 with a .460 Rowland Conversion kit.

      More-or-less the .44 Magnum Desert Eagle but less size, weight, better ergonomics, and no goofy gas system, nor the monster travel on the action.

      As for .357 Magnum in a pistol +1 to Bluesun. The modern Desert Eagles are all built for .50 AE and just tuned down for “Lesser Cartridges”, a Coonan is a better size for .357, and a generally better design, for about the same price.

  4. Wally says:

    I have been holding onto some 50AE brass for years… I think it is really just time to let it go !

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  6. McThag says:

    I have a bone to pick with the knowing more makes you want a derringer less.

    I have a deep interest in historical guns. I want a Remington .41 over-under because I like period guns.

    The knowing more about guns = wanting derringer less is really more a matter that knowing more about guns means you are less likely to think that a derringer is a good choice for self defense and not a true measure of desire.

    The same holds for the Desert Eagle and NAA revolvers.

    I’d happily add an American Derringer Company over under in .45 Colt, a Desert Eagle in .44 or an NAA revolver in .22 Magnum; but as toys not tools. I have quite the collection of .25 autos, as interesting designs not as carry pieces.

    Tam, who coined the phrase, doubtlessly has guns that fall into this category too; but we should mention the distinction every once and a while so new readers will be let in on the joke.

    • Weerd Beard says:

      Valid point! Jay has a .22 NAA that I discovered was a MISERY to shoot…but if somebody gave me one, I doubt I’d be able to bring myself to sell it.

      I have a CZ 52 pistol. The thing is a BALL of failure, but man I like OWNING it.

      Also I’m a HUGE fan of the SMLE, but my Indian Ishapore 2A is probably the worst execution of that fine line of guns, but its a great historical piece.

      Same goes for Mosin Nagants. The more I learn about guns, the less seriously I take my Mosin. I wouldn’t feel under-gunned taking a SMLE Jungle Carbine, or the Ruger Scout Rifle into combat….but the Mosin is a rifle that lost a lot of relevance over the years.

      But collections are one things, guns people actually USE is another.

      Oh and given that Desert Eagles tend to cost more than $700 used, and around $1200 new, there’s a LOT of things I could better spend that money on…

  7. BobG says:

    Never have been interested in Deagles.
    Sounds like you need to get a Redhawk to go with those .44 mag dies.

    • Weerd Beard says:

      If I get a Redhawk it’d be in .454 Casul and it’d be the Alaskan Snubbie because that’s a FUCKING BEAUTIFUL gun, and its a delight to shoot…and I can use the “Ruger Only” loads!

      Oh and I have dies for that too! Snerk!

  8. palazzj1 says:

    Funny, my .50ae doesn’t jam one bit. Keep it clean and know how to shoot. I have never had a jam or a stove pipe. 300 rounds through it.

  9. yukster says:

    The story goes that the Desert Eagle was developed by the Israeli Military for use by tank commanders, in case they became trapped behind enemy lines. I own a Desert Eagle IMI 50. AE and it has never jammed. All guns need to be clean and well lubricated to work properly. I can also shoot it very accurately and at great distances. I’ve heard stories of people using these for hunting. People often accuse the Desert Eagle of being impractical or just a show gun. I would call sending a 50. caliber bullet through the air “awesome”, not impractical. What about the fun factor? It’s also just as practical as any other large caliber pistol….

    It is a heavy hitting, large caliber pistol, built to stop charging Arabs. How could you not love it?

    • Weerd Beard says:

      Unfortunately as cool as the story you give is, it just isn’t true. Magnum Research came up with the Eagle .357 in the late 70s, but it had serious reliability issues. IMI took on the project and essentially perfected it to the gun we see today. I’ve never seen any confirmed stories to IMI ever having intentions to issue the gun to troops, especially when they had the war-proven Uzi family for tank crews, entry teams, and other close-quarters fighters.

      They sure can be used for hunting, but as the above video shows, and my own personal experience, as well as just the basics of a high-recoil pistol with such a long action, its a gun that is inherently unreliable. When it comes to launching massive bullets at high speeds from smaller guns, revolvers just do the job vastly better.

      Still if you enjoy them, there’s nothing I can say to take that away from you! For me, the coolest way to launch a big bullet is Ruger’s Alaskan, but that’s just me!

  10. Paul Hayes says:

    I think it is really funny how many people write negative comments on the Desert Eagle. How many of you actually own one, or have even shot one ? It’s always a friend of a friend has one and it jams all the time. With the exception of the people that posted they own one, I bet 99 percent of the people that posted a negative comment on the Desert Eagle have never shot one or even held one. Like posted earlier if the pistol is held properly and cleaned it will fiction flawlessly. Just because you cannot afford a Desert Eagle doesn’t give you the right to post negatively about it, and I’m betting that is almost every one of you that posted a negative comment about it.

    • Weerd Beard says:

      Well I’ve shot my friends .44 Mag Desert Eagle several times on several occasions.

      He has a ton of interesting guns I’ve shot, and that’s the only one that I’ve had jams with, all were stovepipes just like the ones that ALMOST happen in the Kahr Arms videos I posted.

      The .50 AE guns might be more reliable just because of the higher gas volume and higher operating pressure. More bolt thrust I’m sure will make the ejection a lot more energetic.

      That long action gives a lot of time for the round to get caught up.

      I can certainly afford one…I just don’t WANT one.

      Thanks for commenting!

  11. Martin says:

    Today I first shot DE 50AE. I have many firearms from 22lr up to 45-70 GOV.
    But shooting form DE is fantastic. It is true that the DE in this caliber should be used by experienced shooter. If you do not fill very comfortable with 44 MAG, you will find 50AE nearly impossible to shoot with pleasure. The discussion concerning reliability seems endless. I think that good maintenance, lubrication and ammo with full power will prevent most of jamming. Sure – 50cal. should be the most reliable. Nice gun and quite deferent from the others- and that is fine.

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  13. David Bragg says:

    Thanks for running a honest site, and not just blowing fluff. Shooting the .45 acp for 25 some odd years I became bored and thought the change to the desert eagle .44 would put me at the range more offen.
    If you like to practice clearing a jammed side arm, this is the one for you. Let us go down the list…..light primer strike, extracter fails, stove pipe. All with factory ammo from 180 grn to 240 grn so I am ruling out my reloads. I will contacting magnum research and sending it back to them to fix. If it returns with the same issues it will go into the ocean; I could not in good conscience sell the gun to someone else. Hopefully my review will save some other poor slob $1000.00
    Respectfully

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