View Full Version : 1898 Krag

Cotton Bob
September 28, 2007, 03:32 PM
Hi guys,
I am new to this forum, but I am needing some help. I just bought a 1898 Krag rifle. It appears to be a carbine, SN# 129890 It is missing both the front and read sights (which I would like to replace) and someone mounted the most gawd awful scope mount on it. I am not wanting to spend a ton of money on this rifle, but would like any help you guys can give on where to find the sights, and if what I have is indeed a carbine.
Cotton Bob, Waco, Tx

Jim Watson
September 28, 2007, 05:19 PM
I have looked and looked at your post and cannot see it well enough to tell if it is a carbine or a cut down rifle. But they only made 5000 1898 carbines, so it is likely to be a shortened rifle. The NRA-DCM sold Krags cheap when replaced by the '03. Carbines were popular because sporterizing a long rifle had not caught on at the time. So they ran out of carbines and had Benecia Arsenal cut rifles down to carbine length. The easy way to recognize these is the use of an '03 front sight.

Probably be a simple way to de-Bubba yours, too. A rear sight will be harder. There is an 1896 sight on e-bay. Not correct but would appear ok.

James K
September 28, 2007, 05:28 PM
Since the Model 1898 Krag receiver is the same for carbine and rifle, Springfield made receivers in advance and put together whatever type was needed. Your serial number is in a range where there were carbines, but there were many more rifles.

One place to look is the stock. Carbines had a sling ring on the left side and no sling swivels on the butt stock. A carbine should have a 22" barrel and the muzzle should be crowned.

If the front of the barrel shows no signs of having had front sight stud, it has been cut off. If only the blade is missing, you can easily fix that, but if the stud is missing, you will have to replace it with a commercial type front sight.

Rear sights are available at gun shows and from parts dealers.

In all honestly, I think you probably have a cut down rifle, and it will have nearly zero value as a collectors item, though it might make a good deer rifle. If it has been drilled and tapped for that scope, it would be very difficult and costly to attempt any "restoration". New-made barrels are available, but with installation will cost well over $200.



Cotton Bob
September 28, 2007, 05:50 PM
Thanks guys.

The scope on this thing is simply awful. I bought it because I am a big Theodore Roosevelt fan..and the Krag was the tool used in the Spanish American War..(you guys knew that).

I just want at this point to find some decent sights for it. Any suggestion on a front sight? I found several rear sights on ebay and else where.


September 28, 2007, 06:49 PM

you might check here from time to time......

I was watching a show the other night that had a feature on the Krag rifle. In pretty good shape it was about $850 with original parts.

James K
September 29, 2007, 02:56 PM
As I said, rear sights are available. I have seen them at gun shows for anywhere from $15 to $50 or more, depending on the model. Your 98 would have had either Model 1896 sights or the later 1901 or 1902 sight. They all fit the holes, and the Army was constantly upgrading them.

The front sight base is simply unobtainable and has to be brazed on, not an easy job and not easy to do without discoloring the barrel. I would find a Model 1903 sight with the band and base. Those can be obtained from Gun Parts (www.gunpartscorp.com) complete for around $20 and can be fitted. They also have repro carbine stocks and barrels.

Please understand that no matter what you do, you cannot "restore" that rifle. You will be making a butchered rifle into something that doesn't look quite as bad, but is still in no way a collectible or of any interest except as a hunting rifle.


Cotton Bob
September 29, 2007, 06:34 PM

You are right, there is nothing that I can do to this old rifle that will make it collectable. I would just like to put it back to "close to stock" for my own enjoyment. I will check out the front sights for the 1903 as you suggested. The old gun shoots pretty good, groups about 3" at 100 yards just as it is. I bought it very right so I can't get burned no matter what I do. I just thougt it was a cool old gun and wanted to put it back together as much as possible. It's a shooter..