New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

U.S. Military Krags
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butlersrangers
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by butlersrangers »

Nice looking Krag and stock 'cartouche'.
Your rifle, #385731, was assembled around April or May, 1902.

What load and distance, did you shoot?

You have a couple of sighting options with your 1901 sight.

For range work on 'paper' targets, many Krag shooters stand the 'Leaf' up and set the 'peep' at the 100 yard mark.
It is a fun sight to use at the target range with a 6 o'clock hold.

Now that you are more familiar with your Krag's trigger and sights, a bit of load development and elevation adjustment may tighten-up your hits and put them in the higher scoring rings.
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NG target.jpg
NG target.jpg (58.37 KiB) Viewed 118 times
peep 1901.jpg
peep 1901.jpg (77.71 KiB) Viewed 118 times

EddieB
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by EddieB »

butlersrangers wrote: Thu Oct 07, 2021 2:54 am What load and distance, did you shoot?
Captech Brass
Hornady 3075
32.5g H4895
WLR

I was shooting at 75 yards.

My problem now is I need more bullets!!! Can't find em any where. :lol:

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butlersrangers
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by butlersrangers »

The Hornady #3075 (180 grain RN and flat-base) should be a nice shooting projectile in the .30-40 Krag.
Looking at my Hornady Manual, your projectile must have been moving in the neighborhood of 2000 fps.
This all seems quite reasonable.

A lot of Krags seem to do OK with 165 grain to 180 grain flat-based 'spitzers' moving around 2,300 fps.

The 'spitzer' bullets may be easier to locate.
The long-neck of the .30-40 cartridge-case allows bullets to be seated rather far out, which cuts down 'bullet jump'.
Ignore the 'crimping' groove, loaded rounds just have to be able to pass through the magazine.

Attached: a project Krag with a rough bore. The 165 grain Speer 'spitzer' did OK at 50 yards.
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rough bore Krag.jpg
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rough bore 50 yards-165 grain spitzers.jpg
rough bore 50 yards-165 grain spitzers.jpg (90.94 KiB) Viewed 100 times
Last edited by butlersrangers on Sun Oct 10, 2021 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

EddieB
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by EddieB »

butlersrangers wrote: Sat Oct 09, 2021 4:28 am
A lot of Krags seem to do OK with 165 grain to 180 grain flat-based 'spitzers' moving around 2,300 fps.

The 'spitzer' bullets may be easier to locate.
The long-neck of the .30-40 cartridge-case allows bullets to be seated rather far out to cut down 'bullet jump'.
Ignore the 'crimping' groove, loaded rounds just have to be able to pass through the magazine.
Do you have a Hornady # for the bullet you use?

Nice group, I have another Krag with a nice bore, hopefully I can groups like that out of that gun.

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butlersrangers
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by butlersrangers »

'EddieB' - Actually, I don't shoot a lot of Hornady projectiles. The target I posted, shot from a Krag with a very rough bore, was a Speer bullet - #2034.
(I went and looked at the box and was surprised that the 165 grain, soft-nose 'spitzer' bullets had a boat-tail base.

I was using WW-748 propellant for a lot of my .30-40 Krag cartridge tinkering. I've abandoned that powder because it was kind of a dead-end for versatility.
Also, it suddenly deteriorated on me and I 'condemned' 5 lbs. of it.
I am now using mainly IMR-3031 and IMR-4895 propellants for bullets in the 152 grain to 180 grain weight range.

Two bullets I have in large quantity are 152 grain M-2 Ball projectiles from 1948 and Sierra 168 grain Match Kings (boat-tails). Most of my Krags like these projectiles.

I would recommend you check at your local gun-shops and on-line and experiment with whatever bullets are available. Don't overlook projectiles that are made for the .30-30 Winchester.
The 170 grain '.30-30' projectiles shoot well in a lot of Krags.

Note: I stocked-up on Match-Kings years ago.
Attachments
a_faux_1896-peep4_001.jpg
a_faux_1896-peep4_001.jpg (76.81 KiB) Viewed 86 times
a_promising_load.jpg
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Doubly Reincarnated
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by Doubly Reincarnated »

The above load works well for me, although I add a couple of tenths of 3031. IIRC, it is a Phil Sharpe load from the 1930s, only he used the then-common M1 ball bullets for the .30-06. It is also, scaled down for case volume, the 3031 equivalent of the .30-06 International Match load using HiVel #2.

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butlersrangers
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by butlersrangers »

IMHO - Group size can often be improved by 'cleaning-up' a rifle's trigger-pull.
With the Krag, I literally mean cleaning the trigger mechanism.

Most U.S. Krag rifles and carbines will be found to have dried & hardened cosmoline deposits coating the working surfaces of the trigger, sear, receiver, cocking-piece, striker-mechanism, and bolt exterior and interior.

This cosmoline, then known as "cosmic oil", was applied over 100 years ago to lubricate and preserve metal surfaces. Time has caused it to become sticky and 'gum-like'. Dirt, sand and dust have combined with the 'gum' to further increase the coefficient of friction.
I believe these old gummy deposits add weight and roughness to the trigger-pull and slow the striker's "lock-time".

Disassembly, soaking parts in a solvent (like Hoppe's, kerosene, or mineral spirits), and a vigorous 'brushing' with bronze brushes dissolves and removes the 'gum'. (I use old bore-brushes and bronze 'tooth-brushes' to break-up the old deposits).

Lightly covering the 'working' surfaces of the cleaned parts and cavities, with modern gun lubricants (oils or greases) will smooth operation of parts and improve most Krag triggers and striker "Lock-Time".

Note: I like military two-stage triggers, when both stages are smooth and the second-stage 'breaks clean'.
Like many shooters, I like the safety of the initial deep sear engagement.

Oddly, back in the early 1900's, some shooters perceived the two-stage Krag trigger as undesirable and not conducive to good marksmanship.
They didn't like the movement of taking up the slack of the first-stage and thought it interfered with accurate shooting.
Maybe part of this dislike was because the trigger type was new and different from previous U.S. military arms.
They called the first-stage "drag" and came up with ingenious ways to either mechanically take-up "drag" or permanently altering parts to eliminate the first-stage.

Generations of military shooters gained shooting experience with two-stage triggers. Ultimately, it became a very accepted design.
The Krag's two-stage trigger is an early one and maybe a bit more complicated than most.
It is usually improved and better appreciated after a good cleaning and fresh lubrication.

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Parashooter
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by Parashooter »

The Krag's two-stage trigger is an early one and maybe a bit more complicated than most.
In what way more complicated? Just 4 components compared to 5 on Mauser or M1903:
1. Trigger
2. Sear
3. Trigger pin
4. Sear spring
5. Sear pin (Not needed on Krag)
Same basic 2-hump operating principle, too.
Attachments
M1903TrigMan.gif
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KragTrigMan.gif
KragTrigMan.gif (60.79 KiB) Viewed 63 times

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butlersrangers
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by butlersrangers »

'Parashooter' is very correct about the Krag using 4 parts as opposed to the 5 parts of the Mauser and 1903 Springfield triggers. (Two of the Mauser & 1903 parts are round pins).
If the only criteria for complexity is the number of parts, then more parts is more complex.

My observation was based on the more complicated shapes and surfaces of the Krag trigger & sear parts.
The 'knuckle' at the front of the Krag sear and its recess in the receiver is a rather complex joint and potentially the source of considerable friction.
There are challenging demands placed on the rather short & stiff-acting Krag sear-spring.
In my mind, the Krag trigger may be a bit more complicated to visualize and understand how it operates.
The Krag trigger, I believe, required more machining operations in its manufacture, than the 1903 Springfield trigger did.
For most of humanity, it is more difficult to reassemble the Krag trigger mechanism than it is to reassemble a "Mauser" style trigger.
(This was my thinking, when I wrote, the Krag trigger may be more complicated than most. It is my opinion and I may very well be wrong. Hey, the pay's the same)!
Attachments
krag-trigger mechanism.jpg
krag-trigger mechanism.jpg (138.53 KiB) Viewed 60 times
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a_Krag_trigger__1.jpg
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FredC
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Re: New Purchase - Rusted Barrel

Post by FredC »

There have been several good explanations on the forum about installing Krag triggers. One thing that I would add is putting a thin plastic shim between the sear and the receiver when sliding the trigger group into place. All the pieces are case hard (very hard) and you can chip the sear when sliding it in. The fake credit cards we get in the mail are sometimes real plastic besides being good for scraping light frost off the windshield and cleaning algae out of the cat's water dish would be handy when putting the trigger in.

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