30-40 Krag for hunting??


October 26, 2003, 12:02 PM
A guy i know has a 30-40 kraig (sp??) that he offered to sell me, 200 bucks gets the the gun, a box of ammo and a leather sling. does anyone have experience with this particular gun that can tell me about it? what would it be good for, whats it comparable to, what its limitations on hunting would be?? seens like i deal, but i figured since i don't know have to say till monday, i'd run it by you guys.

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Art Eatman
October 26, 2003, 12:10 PM
Sporterized? Original?

The Krag has a single-lug bolt, so the chamber pressure is limited to 40,000 psi. No problem; they're a bit more oomph than a .30-30.

The twist is more suitable to bullets of 180 grains or more, than to the 150s.

Beaucoup deer have fallen to the .30-40.

It has one of the smoothest actions you'll ever feel...

To me, $200 sounds like a steal, even if sporterized. In military configuration and in good condition, they'll triple that.


Larry Ashcraft
October 26, 2003, 12:25 PM
My great grandad used an 1895 Winchester in 30-40 Krag for all his hunting. In fact my cousin still has the rifle. He was legendary with that rifle, killing elk, deer and antelope with it. He died in the 1940's, but you can still hear stories about grandad's long range shooting with the old Krag. Of course, it wasn't the rifle, it was the man behind it.

As Art said, more oomph than a 30-30, but not quite a 30-06.

October 26, 2003, 12:52 PM
hey thanks guys, i'll let you know how that goes, just called the guy, and i'm leaving now to go have a look see, i'll followup later.

Detachment Charlie
October 26, 2003, 01:38 PM
Took my first whitetail with a bubba'ed 30-40. DRT. Great PA woods deer gun. Action was as smooth as a baby's butt. Wish I still had it.

October 26, 2003, 04:08 PM
For $200 you can't go wrong if it's in any kind of decent condition.

It's almost certainly a sporterized gun. If it's in original military configuration, you shouldn't shoot it (well, maybe a little!), and you should definitely not hunt with it. Some versions of the Krag are extremely valuable if they are in ORIGINAL configuration.

It's a fine gun even if sporterized. I used to have one and got talked out of it in a trade... Anyway, they are absolutely the smoothest bolt action ever made and the .30/40 is a fine sporting round for anything in the lower 48.

Be aware that it's a reloading proposition! You can buy ammo from a few places, but it's either very expensive custom loads or very expensive vintage ammo.


October 26, 2003, 09:31 PM
Got an old Krag in the safe in very good condition, full military, bolt throw like glass its so smooth. A real good shooter even though it hasn't been out for a few years. Four or five rounds through the barrel and its almost too hot to touch. I wonder how they felt after 40-50 rounds in battle or on a range. sssmokin'

November 2, 2003, 06:24 PM
If you can handload 200-220 grain bullets, that Krag will perform much better than paper ballistics would tell. Kind of a thumper rather than a screamer, but at around 2200 fps, it'll really penetrate with heavy bullets. (high sectional density) All manner of critter have fallen to Krags and .303 brits (Ballistic twins). Plus it's reasonably soft shooting.

Johnny Guest
November 3, 2003, 11:25 AM
- - If you want to shooot it more than a very few rounds per year. Super old cartridge.

If you DO decide to handload, please stick with the lower range of loads. the .30-40 is NOT a .30-06, though it will do an equally good job at shorter ranges. The old action just won't take really hot loads. If this Krag is a good example, and if you WANT warmer loads, it'll probably be excellent trading material for a .308 or an '06.

Best of luck - -

November 3, 2003, 01:47 PM
I know nothing/zip about the value of the rifle you queried, but tha .30-40 Krag will do anything the lower 48 have to offer - given a proper bullet, placement & reasonable ranges.

I shoot a short-barreled .308 (165s at 2400 fps = right at the .300 Savage/Krag load) & it's taken 3-for-3 elk = DRT.

November 3, 2003, 10:44 PM
well i caved and got the thing, and a coyote was its first victim. it was also the 3rd bullet out of the gun by me, which made it even cooler. this old gun has an action smoother than glass, just like everyone says, and its dead nuts on at about 150 yds where i nailed the coyote. definatly wrong place wrong time for the coyote, who was ambling across my back pasture about the same time i got the gun home and with a serious case of "gota shoot it!". dropped him in his tracks. i've got him skined out and when its all tanned up i'll take pics and post them.

back to the gun, the ammo he gave me was old remington core-loked, and the box looks ancient. i'm currently trying to get pics of the gun and ammo posted so somebody can tell me what exactly i've bought. overal shape in nice, and the guy came down to 150$ so i just couldnt pass that up. i'm working on getting pics resized now, so hopefully soon they will be up and you guy can be the judge.

Added- thanks for all the info posted, it was a big help.

Matt G
November 4, 2003, 04:08 AM
...a coyote was its first victim. it was also the 3rd bullet out of the gun by me, which made it even cooler.
Charmed rifle. For $150, how could you have done better? :)

Jealousy rages here. ;)

Al Thompson
November 4, 2003, 08:23 AM
Jeff Cooper like's 'em......:)

November 4, 2003, 07:24 PM
If the action is smooth you didn't go wrong for $150. Does it have a flip open box on the side for bullets? A full military stock or cut down?

November 4, 2003, 10:59 PM
figured it out, heres the gun on a wall, this sucker is long

November 4, 2003, 11:00 PM
Close up of the action and that big ammo box thing.

November 4, 2003, 11:01 PM
the krag next to a remington 870, for size comparison

November 4, 2003, 11:08 PM
Matt G- Hehehe definatly got some sort of mojo on it :cool: i think i'm i love.

so, from looking at it, can anybody clue me in on specifics?? what makes it stock?? the barrel is rediculesly long on it, but the stock itself doesnt look like it was the original for this particular gun, but i could be wrong on that.

like i said, i've now put 6 rnds through it, and the ammo i have i want to conserve a little. with the warnings of not shooting hot loads, will any old ammo i can buy at the store work?? gander mountain had a box of winchester (i think) but i didnt have 20 bucks on me at the time and i was skeptical about it being too hot for the old gun. worst case scenario, its a really cool looking old piece.

November 5, 2003, 05:03 PM
The gun is a .30-40 Krag-Jorgenson. The first military rifle in the US to fire a smokeless cartridge. Made between 1896 to 1902-03. The stock should be full length except for about 2" on the end. This one has been "sporterized". Standard barrel length is about 29- 29 1/2". I think they also had a bayonet lug on the last stock clamp at the end of the barrel, but I would have to dig into the back of my safe to find out for sure.

It may be possible to find a stock, they have no pistol grip, just staight, but I doubt it. As is you did OK on price, a good full military is going for $400-$700. I'll try to get the chance to take a picture of mine so you can compare.

November 5, 2003, 07:53 PM
Having some trouble with my camera, dropped it about a month ago. We'll see how they show up.

November 5, 2003, 07:54 PM
And this one.

Mike Weber
November 6, 2003, 12:43 AM
Congratulations on your Krag purchase. I've got the Krag carbine that my Grandad carried in Teddy Rooseveldts war. Over the years the old gun has accounted for no telling how many deer as it was passed around the family. Its still one of my favorite saddle guns. I saw a picture years ago of a world record elk that was taken with a 30-40 Krag in Crested Butte Colorado in 1915. Stick to factory loads and light handloads and the old Krag will serve you well.

kentucky bucky
November 8, 2003, 02:02 AM
And why the heck not??????????

PS....If you don't take it I want his Phone #;)

November 9, 2003, 06:51 PM
Nice rifle you've got there.

A friend of mine has a krag and before he started handloading, shot the Winchester ammo and it worked fine.

The Krag is on my "List of guns to buy". I think it would be great if new rifles were still chambered for the the .30-40, it's a good caliber...

November 9, 2003, 08:09 PM
I had a chance when I was out west to buy a Winchester 1895, brand new, in 30-40 Krag. I passed on it, and every time I hear Krag stories my face drops a bit. Damn, I shoulda bought that gun. Good luck with yours, it's seems like a real cherry.

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