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429 Desert Eagle

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In 2018, Magnum Research standardized the 429 Desert Eagle (DE). It followed the extremely similar 440 Cor-Bon. The two rounds are functionally equivalent. I have no good explanation of why Magnum Research choose to create an oh-so-close chambering to the 440 Cor-Bon.

The 429 does work at significantly higher pressure than the 440 did, so it offers better performance. While Cor-bon envisioned the 440 as a semi-automatic option for the Desert Eagle handgun that would duplicate 44 Magnum revolver performance, Desert Eagle saw it as a way to significantly exceed performance of the 44 Magnum in the same gun but do so while generating less recoil than the 50 Action Express.

For those with big enough hands to comfortably shoot the Desert Eagle pistol, the 429 DE chambering has a lot to offer. Loaded with the right bullet, it is a serious contender for an ideal hunting cartridge chambered in a repeater.


Loaded with 300-grain hard cast or jacketed bullets, it can achieve 1450 fps.

As with any bottlenecked pistol round, best practice is to apply a roll-crimp after seating the bullet. A roll-crimp eases loading of rounds into the cylinder and can help limit bullet pull under recoil if only modestly. I cannot too-strongly recommend getting a second seating-and-crimping die so you can have one adjusted to seat the bullet and the second adjusted to only crimp the case mouth. Generally, attempting to do both operations in one step is a recipe for damaged and destroyed cases.


The text associated with the cartridge description reflects opinions and conclusions of the author, M.L. (Mic) McPherson. Lee Precision and its employees do not necessarily either agree or disagree with any of his comments. We present these with due deference to his recognized expertise in the firearms field. His acumen extends to handloading and all aspects of ballistics - internal, external, and terminal.
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