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'98 Krag questions

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by You-Two, Dec 12, 2009.

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  1. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    This '98 Krag has been sitting in the local shop since I moved here last summer. Stock has been sporterized, but the barrel appears to be original length. The rear sight has been removed and some sort of adjustable peep sight has been mounted just forward of the magazine cut-off. There is a small engraving of a bounding buck on the left side of the sight, just above the lever to adjust the elevation. The serial# is in the 381XXX range.

    Anyone know what the sights are? How about when the rifle was built?

    I'm thinking about picking this one up eventually for a deer rifle. I already have a nice original Krag and like the action. Maybe get one of the new carbine barrels CMP is offering and keep the rear sight like it is. I know there are better rifles and cartridges out there....I just like projects and having something different.

    Thanks!
     

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  2. lopezni

    lopezni member

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    I wish I could see the whole rifle, my father has a sporterized '98 Krag and it is a kick-ass deer rifle. Williams peep sight, a glassbeded Fajen stock, and a 2x redfield scout scope mounted on a turn off mount toward the end of the rifle. If the price is right, go for it.
     
  3. Fat Boy

    Fat Boy Member

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    I am assuming you will hand-load???

    I had an opportunity to buy one of the "saddle-ring" carbine's a few years ago for a reasonable sum and passed because I couldn't find commercially-loaded shells for it...
     
  4. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    Sorry...just a couple quick pics I shot in the store. The stock has been thinned starting in front of the magazine well in addition to being cut short. Your father's Krag sounds pretty cool. I might just get it...the price is lower than what the CMP wants for their "JUNK" krags.
     
  5. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    Yes...I do plan to reload for it as a matter of fact. I have some Winchester rounds from about 10 yrs ago and will need to purchase some new brass....which I've found is a little scarce these days!
     
  6. kragluver

    kragluver Member

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    I know that Remington only makes a run of .30-40 brass once a year. Buy it when you see it.

    Krags are EXCELLENT cast bullet shooters - they have to be as the barrels on those rifles tended to run all over the map (slug the bore). Mine is .312. It doesn't shoot .308 jacketed bullets all that well, but it is a tack-driver with properly sized cast bullets. I've yet to try jacketed .311 bullets in it. SR-4759 or 5744 are good powders for cast.

    I've read that Krags made after the fall of 1899 had much better barrel tolerances than older ones. Based on your rifles S/N, I'd guess it was made in about 1901 so it may have a true .308 bore.
     
  7. SaxonPig

    SaxonPig Member

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    You already have a Krag so what can we tell you?

    The 30-40 is adequate for hunting.

    This is a caliber than really demands reloading for economy.

    This rifle is already modified so do with it as you wish.

    People who have Krags tend to love them. I love mine.


    [​IMG]
     
  8. Malamute

    Malamute Member

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    The sight is a Lyman I believe. Guessing from what you said about the price of the rifle, the sight may be worth about half what they are asking for the gun.

    I'd say buy it, especially since you already have one, and a shooter grade gun would only complement the original one you have. It also has far more class than anything I can think of thats been on the market in the last 40+ years as a deer class rifle.
     
  9. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    Thanks for all the great replies!

    I was told on the CMP board that it is a Lyman 33K sight (made from 1895ish to 1945). Looks like I might go start the 10-day process this weekend to acquire the rifle (CA laws). Ordered a bunch of brass too!

    kragluver - Thanks for the handloading information. I'll look into some cast bullets in addition to the standard 220gr RN.

    SaxonPig - Nice Krag! I saw a few threads during my search where you mentioned it before. What style stock is that and what type of front sight are you using? How long is the barrel? It sounds like it was a long-term project for you.

    Questions:
    1) What would be the optimum range for a .30-40 using 220gr RN bullets in a hunting scenario? I was thinking about 200-250yds max depending on the shooters skill.

    2) What barrel length would be the best compromise to maintain quick handling while keeping the velocities up? Maybe 24-26"?
     
  10. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    So true...nothing like adding a little class. Just need to make sure it is done right!
     
  11. Uncle Mike

    Uncle Mike Member

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    Saxon has ALL the coolest rifles!

    NICE rifle saxon...nice!
     
  12. SaxonPig

    SaxonPig Member

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    Thank you for the kind words.

    I went deer hunting with my best friend when I was a kid. His dad packed an old cut down Krag amd I always admired that rifle. As an adult I looked for one but the prices put me off. At the time I was looking (1980s) I wanted to spend no more than $150 for a Krag to shoot.

    After maybe 12 years of fruitless searching I saw one at a local show. I casually asked how much he wanted expecting the usual "$250" reply. It was all I could do to resist ripping out my wallet when said he'd take $90 for it. I offered $80 and walked away with it for $85. About 3 rows over I found some used RCBS dies for $8 and I was in business.

    It had the receiver sight on it with the original front blade which didn't work at all. Rifle shot 20" high at 100 yards. I bought a Williams ramp (a tall one) and a local smith charged by $25 to install it.

    I think the stock is black walnut and came from The Great American Gunstock Company. It was a discounted model and I paid $95 for it ($10 more than I paid for the rifle). It required a lot more fitting than I anticipated and it took me several years to get it finished working on it now and then. I think it is a handsome rifle.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2009
  13. Malamute

    Malamute Member

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    Have you considered lighter bullets? Unless you were hunting larger critters, like elk, or there were the sharp pointy variety of bears in the neighborhood, I'd seriously consider bullets in the 150, 165 or 180 gr weights (and perhaps even with the larger animals around). They would likely provide faster kills/stops on deer than the heavily constructed 220's, and they would be quite a bit flatter shooting. 300 yards would be simple with a lighter spitzer bullet load. Sighted about 2" high @ 100, you should be able to hold on a deer @ 300.
     
  14. kragluver

    kragluver Member

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    Be careful with those Krag's...

    ...shooting them is extremely addictive:)
     
  15. Kragshooter

    Kragshooter Member

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    HI, New to this site and glad to see Krag shooters are here. I have shot Krags off and on for 40 years. I have this sporter, shoots better than my ole eyes can. Weaver K4 scope. Like Kragluver says, they are addictive.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    Good points Malamute...I'll take a look at all the different bullet weights.
     
  17. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    Got the Krag!

    Picked up the Krag the other day...got it for $300 + fees. The shop happened to have 4 boxes of 30-40, so picked those up too. Cleaned it up, but haven't been able to shoot it. I am still trying to figure out where I want to go with this rifle. I could leave it as is if it shoots well, but that barrel is aweful long for field use. Or, I tossed around the idea of shortening the barrel and getting a new (nicer) stock. The current stock has been thinned down a little too much for my tastes and the Great American stock company is just down the road from here in Yuba City. The CMP is selling new barrels too, so that might be an option. Then I could potentially sell the current barrel to someone looking for an original.

    Either way...I intend to shoot it with the irons, no scope mounting. Here are some pics I took before taking her apart for some cleaning. I included my standard '98 for comparison. There are some numbers etched on the bottom of the receiver & barrel, but they don't match the rifle's serial. Any ideas what they may mean?

    Thanks!
     

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  18. You-Two

    You-Two Member

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    More pics of the Krag...
     

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  19. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Might be a previous owner's drivers license number or other ID from one of those anti theft programs. The kind where the PD furnishes you an electric pen to scratch a number on your belongings.
     
  20. Malamute

    Malamute Member

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    Since you already have a rifle, and this gun has been altered, it may make a nice carbine. As you said, the barrel may be very interesting to many that want to restore a rifle. A new stock and barrel would make a nice carbine, as a shooter, and a hunter. I'd carry a gun like that (carbine)out in the hills, just for the joy of getting it out in the sunshine, and letting it breath free air again. Old guns just seem like more fun to take out for walks/hunts.

    Are you aware that the rear aperture of the Lyman sight has a small folding insert to make it a larger hole for field use? The little nub on top is the part to grab it to fold it forward. Gives you a fine and coarse aperture. Pretty crafty, those Lyman guys.

    Nice gun, in any event. Good buy on it.
     
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