About Howell Old West Conversions
In 1969, Kenny Howell started restoring original Colt Cartridge conversions and other antique firearms for collectors. Kenny realized he needed parts that were no longer available, so he started making them himself.
He is a tool and diemaker by trade, so he set up the tooling and made the molds himself to reproduce parts needed to complete a repair or restoration. When restoring an original conversion, especially a Colt conversion, the part has to be exact, close won’t cut it. This attention to the smallest detail led to the next evolution in the history of Howell Conversions, the custom conversions of Italian made “Colt” type revolvers.
In 1984, Kenny made his first conversion of an 1851 Navy replica revolver. Since then, hundreds have been made using Uberti and Colt second and third generation percussion revolvers. These custom made guns involved a tremendous amount of hand work and labor, but the result is a “Museum Quality” reproduction.
The Howell Conversions were featured in numerous magazine articles, and their desirability soared. For a lot less than an original, which may or may not be in good enough shape to be fired, the collector could have a “brand new” conversion, capable of being fired regularly! The Howell Cartridge conversions, due to their attention to detail and authenticity have attained a collector’s status of their own. It is rare to find one for sale as the owners consider them to be true collector’s pieces in their own right.