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.338 or .358 Krag Wildcats?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by grsjax, Dec 2, 2008.

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  1. grsjax

    grsjax Member

    Dec 2, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    I have a great old Krag sporter with a shot out barrel. I was thinking of having it rebored to a .338 or .358 size but can't find any information about .338/358 Krag wildcats? Anyone know of anything in this area. Ideally I would like something like a .338 Krag Ackley Improved cartridge.
  2. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    I have read of reboring to .35 Krag for that reason.
    Krags were out of fashion by the time the .338s came in and I have not heard of a .338 Krag, but there is no technical reason it could not be done. I don't know what an Improved chamber would gain, I think I'd just have the bore and neck opened up. Load data would be easy, a 225 grain .338 would shoot so close to a 220 grain .308 as to make no difference.

    $350 at Clearwater.
  3. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Sep 17, 2007
    Eastern KS
    The problem is to find something that will feed through the action, and I think that might not include a straight-walled, sharp-shoulder, big bore Ackley Improved.

    The book "Bolt-Action Rifles" by Frank de Haas discusses the problems of converting the Krag to another caliber, even one based on the 30-40 case.

    He mentions that he knew of one guy who had his barrel re-bored to a .35 caliber with good results. No mention if it was a blown-out Ackley Improved or not however.

    He later went on to say that they can be converted successfully to .444 Marlin with only very minor magazine modification.

    MacFarland, in "Modern Gunsmithing" says converting one to feed another caliber is fraught with problems and best not attempted.

    Many years ago, there was a lot going on with the Krag when they were a dime a dozen. But those days are lone gone now, and I just don't have much info on converting them.

    What you want to do, has probably been done & written up in the American Rifleman sixteen times back in the 20's & 30's. But I don't know where to tell you to start looking for information now.

    BTW: I agree completely with Jim Watson on using just a necked up standard case.
    After modern pressure testing equipment and chronographs became available, most of the "Improved" wildcats were found to be not much better then the parent cartridge they were based on when running equal & safe pressure.
    And a Krag action is not one to play with high pressure in!

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