Talk... Me... Out of it! (Krag Rifle)


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Corpral_Agarn
March 22, 2013, 11:31 AM
Hey there, THR!
I came across this 30-40 Krag Rifle (sporterized) for sale and I need someone to talk me out of it... or tell me more about it and what to look for.

I have NO experience with these Krags, I just love the history and the looks of them, but it really needs to be a shooter!
Anyway, please take a look and tell me what you think:
http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=724748&highlight=krag

Thanks for helping me out!
Any help I can get would be much appreciated!

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HoosierQ
March 22, 2013, 01:51 PM
Well the only thing that you really need to worry about is that it is not considered a very strong action. It has one locking lug instead of two. The 30-40 round is not nearly as powerful as it's opponent at San Juan Hill the 7x57 Mauser, or .303, or 8x57 Mauser, or 30-06.

So don't get one and start loading them hot. Some people consider the Krag to have the smoothest bolt action ever and most consider it a Joy to shoot. A co-worker has one and it's a beautiful piece of work, and very nice gun by all measures and a pleasure to hold. My friend has a collection of every US Military arm starting with a genuine Brown Bess, a real, vintage Kentucky/ Pennsylvania rifle, an accurate replica Harper's Ferry 1803 (of Lewis and Clark fame), and everything there after including a Johnson. The Krag is one of his favorites because it is so beautiful even if it was never the acme of military firearms technology.

Certaindeaf
March 22, 2013, 01:55 PM
A tin foil helmet will no longer suffice.. go steel! lolz. Get it and smack it on the ass.

Corpral_Agarn
March 22, 2013, 02:05 PM
A tin foil helmet will no longer suffice.. go steel! lolz. Get it and smack it on the ass.

Uh... I may be slightly dense but... what??? lol it was fun to read but... what?? :o

Corpral_Agarn
March 22, 2013, 02:09 PM
Well the only thing that you really need to worry about is that it is not considered a very strong action. It has one locking lug instead of two. The 30-40 round is not nearly as powerful as it's opponent at San Juan Hill the 7x57 Mauser, or .303, or 8x57 Mauser, or 30-06.

So don't get one and start loading them hot. Some people consider the Krag to have the smoothest bolt action ever and most consider it a Joy to shoot. A co-worker has one and it's a beautiful piece of work, and very nice gun by all measures and a pleasure to hold. My friend has a collection of every US Military arm starting with a genuine Brown Bess, a real, vintage Kentucky/ Pennsylvania rifle, an accurate replica Harper's Ferry 1803 (of Lewis and Clark fame), and everything there after including a Johnson. The Krag is one of his favorites because it is so beautiful even if it was never the acme of military firearms technology.

Thanks for the advice Hoosier, I wouldn't plan on loading it hot (that's not my thing), but I would intend on shooting it as often as possible. I think that what got me was the looks, the history, the magazine, and the famous smooth action. I wish i knew more about this particular piece, though.
I am a little conserned with the "weak action" and the parts availability, though.... :o

natman
March 22, 2013, 02:31 PM
On the plus side, the machining and quality of the parts on these has to be seen to be believed.

On the negative side, it's not a strong action, I'd check the bolt for cracks before I even thought of shooting it and it's NOT the gun for people who want to know the "real maximum load".

This one has been sporterized. $550 sounds a bit steep for a non-original example, but I haven't priced one in a long time. (I've had mine for years).

BruceB
March 22, 2013, 02:55 PM
The rifle pictured is a (somewhat) cut-down infantry rifle.

The original barrel is uncut at 30", and still has the integral front-sight base. If the bore condition is decent, it should be a reasonably-good shooter.

The action is perfectly safe, if in good condition, FOR ITS ORIGINAL LOADS (meaning: do NOT hot-rod it!) . The service ammunition used a 220-grain bullet at around 2000 fps. I load my Krag carbine with a cast bullet of similar weight,at the same velocity. It's great!

Keep the loads moderate. I have considerable experience with both the .30-40 Krag and the .303 British, and I see them as essentially equal as hunting rounds. The .303 has a slight velocity/pressure advantage, but in the hunting fields it's virtually unnoticeable. The original .303 service round used a 215-grain FMJ at about the same speed as the Krag round.

I'd cheerfully hunt almost anything in North America with either, except for possibly the big bears and bison....and they'd kill those as well if pushed to it. They both worked just fine on Canadian moose for me.

That single locking lug should be CLOSELY inspected to ensure it hasn't cracked over the last 100 years.

The rifle pictured could be restored to as-issued condition if desired. A new stock would just about do it. The forward barrel band is funky, and is not an original part in my estimation. Parts are available, but may require some research.

Nice rifle, and I only hope the bore has been well-treated over the years.

To remove the bolt and get a good look at the bore, just pull the bolt completely to the rear, lift the extractor, and rotate the bolt counter-clockwise while drawing it to the rear.

Corpral_Agarn
March 22, 2013, 03:03 PM
The rifle pictured is a (somewhat) cut-down infantry rifle.

The original barrel is uncut at 30", and still has the integral front-sight base. If the bore condition is decent, it should be a reasonably-good shooter.

The action is perfectly safe, if in good condition, FOR ITS ORIGINAL LOADS (meaning: do NOT hot-rod it!) . The service ammunition used a 220-grain bullet at around 2000 fps. I load my Krag carbine with a cast bullet of similar weight,at the same velocity. It's great!

That single locking lug should be CLOSELY inspected to ensure it hasn't cracked over the last 100 years.

The rifle pictured could be restored to as-issued condition if desired. A new stock would just about do it. The forward barrel band is funky, and is not an original part in my estimation. Parts are available, but may require some research.

To remove the bolt and get a good look at the bore, just pull the bolt completely to the rear, lift the extractor, and rotate the bolt counter-clockwise while drawing it to the rear.

Thank you Bruce that is Extremely helpful! I don't think I would restore it, just shoot it and maintain it. I was thinking it might be worth it to try and find a new bolt and just replace it before I shot it. Any downsides to doing that?
BTW, I haven't purchased it yet...

HoosierQ
March 22, 2013, 03:07 PM
The action is not weak. It's just not overbuilt like the very next generation of bolt rifles. Those Mauser 98s and Model 1917's and some others could take heavy magnum loads with just a re-barrel job. That's not going to work with a Krag.

Load all of your 30-40s to original specs and shoot the thing to your heart's content. They were very popular hunting rifles in the early decades of the 20the century because they were so good and so smooth. Very popular dear rifles I guess.

Certaindeaf
March 22, 2013, 03:37 PM
Uh... I may be slightly dense but... what??? lol it was fun to read but... what?? :o
That was code/fun for you are going to get a bolt through your eyesocket. you said talk you out of and I said take the tin foil off and replace it with a.. nevermind. it was a joke and you asked for it

BruceB
March 22, 2013, 03:47 PM
I wouldn't replace the bolt unless it was a real requirement. For one thing, it would likely be VERY expensive, and also would need a gunsmith's services to ensure that it fitted correctly.

Incidentally, you described it as a "Krag carbine"...... it's not! The Carbines were much shorter, at around 22" or 24" barrels. The rifle pictured is clearly a 30" infantry Krag. Nothing wrong with that, of course.

Corpral_Agarn
March 22, 2013, 04:22 PM
That was code/fun for you are going to get a bolt through your eyesocket. you said talk you out of and I said take the tin foil off and replace it with a.. nevermind. it was a joke and you asked for it

I suppose I did at that... well thanks! :)


I wouldn't replace the bolt unless it was a real requirement. For one thing, it would likely be VERY expensive, and also would need a gunsmith's services to ensure that it fitted correctly.

Incidentally, you described it as a "Krag carbine"...... it's not! The Carbines were much shorter, at around 22" or 24" barrels. The rifle pictured is clearly a 30" infantry Krag. Nothing wrong with that, of course.

Thanks for clearing that up for me. I think that the barrel exposure from the stock got me thinking carbine. I can edit the OP. It just looks nice, to me. I am still wrastlin' with whether or not to pounce on it... :uhoh:

Red October
March 22, 2013, 04:44 PM
As many others have already said, the action is "weak" only in the relative sense. Heat treating really wasn't done back then, so compared to the Mauser 98 or modern actions, yes, it's weak. However, if you shoot the loads it was designed for you should have no problems. Somewhere on this board you can find a reference to Ackley's destructive testing of the Krag - I think a lot of people would be surprised at what it took to destroy the "weak" Krag action, even after the locking lug was ground off!

I'm a Krag fan, so maybe I'm biased, but I would buy it, shoot it, don't exceed maximum listed loads, and (most of all) ENJOY IT.

Sorry, I guess I totally failed to meet your original request of talking you out of it. :-)

303tom
March 24, 2013, 02:10 PM
I would get it if I were you, not going to necessarily say that rifle was (sporterized) that rifle was only built in about 20 different configurations. And as far as weak, the Krag had 3 locking lugs not just one..............

Romeo 33 Delta
March 24, 2013, 02:31 PM
OH NO! Don't buy it! The bolt is way too slick and they're just unpleasant to shoot. (Not really!) I've got a couple and they're a hoot.

backbencher
March 24, 2013, 10:22 PM
I've always thought the only reason the Krag was replaced w/ the Springfield is b/c no one developed a proper spitzer load in .30"-40. Norway ran .30"-06 in their Krags following the war, I believe.

jmorris
March 24, 2013, 10:24 PM
Why on earth would you want to have someone talk you out of it? Just get on your way to owning one of everything and be happy.

BruceB
March 24, 2013, 11:52 PM
Probably a more-telling reason for the Krag's military demise was the lack of stripper-clip reloading. Having to handle individual rounds to reload the rifle was far slower and more difficult than using strippers as did so many of the competing military rifles of the day. Some efforts were made to adapt the Krag to stripper-clip loading, but they apparently came to naught.

As to the cartridge, a simple substitution of a spitzer bullet would have helped a great deal. This is exactly what was done with the ,303 British, the Mauser rounds, and the .30'03 (which then became our wonderful .30'06).

SaxonPig
March 25, 2013, 08:55 AM
The Krag is flat out one of the coolest rifles ever made. The price on this one seems a tad high to me but no worries about owning and shooting a Krag.


http://www.fototime.com/ABFAC6361D330B1/standard.jpg

Corpral_Agarn
March 25, 2013, 11:06 AM
So I had to pass on this rifle... Sure didn't want to, but the monies are a little tight right now and I had to "Prioritize" my next firearm purchase. A simple question like "do you want an M1 Garand, or a Krag?" helped me decide. :rolleyes:

You guys have convinced me, though, and I will be looking around in the future for another one! To me, they are just SOOOO Cool! :cool:

Thanks Again, Everyone!

madcratebuilder
March 26, 2013, 08:55 AM
I suppose I did at that... well thanks! :)




Thanks for clearing that up for me. I think that the barrel exposure from the stock got me thinking carbine. I can edit the OP. It just looks nice, to me. I am still wrastlin' with whether or not to pounce on it... :uhoh:
You can find NOS Krag bolts at reasonable prices. They should headspace OK if you do not have excessive wear in the receiver.

The sportered Krag rifle you linked is over priced IMHO. You can find good shooter grade sporters for much less if you look. The asking price is very near a original rifle price.

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