Photo: Christopher Marona Photography

Photo: Christopher Marona Photography


We live in what is perhaps the golden age of the 1911 pistol.  Today there is a myriad of 1911 pistols options to fit nearly every need and budget, from production pistols, to high quality semi-customs, to full blown masterpieces on the cutting edge of the craft. I invite you to consider what your wants are in a custom pistol and the experience you are after in having one built. Explore the industry, and find the builder and experience that suits you best.  We fans of the 1911 are very lucky to have so many choices.


Your investment in a Chen pistol is an investment in a benchmark of performance and refinement of the custom 1911.  It is a symbol of appreciation for unique, fine craftsmanship.

A minimum of 120 to 150 hours of my personal time goes into the precision crafting of each Stan Chen Custom pistol. Given that I am in my mid 40’s, I estimate that at the most, approximately 300 pistols bearing my makers mark, and the quality it represents, will ever be built.

Each pistol comes in a custom leather case with 2 magazines, and a spare fitted extractor. Included are test targets and a personally written letter from me, detailing and documenting all aspects of the build. Custom fitted hard cases are also available as an option.

While earlier in my career I built mainly on Colt pistols, I currently build full house pistols only from scratch, on my own proprietary frames. These are machined in-house on a high end machining center, not someone else’s frame which has been rebranded. I have spent years perfecting this platform, and absolutely believe this allows me to build you the very finest piece that I am able. It is simply dimensionally and metallurgically superior to any other platform that I can build on.

With a large backlog of work, my current lead time is measured in years for new orders. If waiting patiently for fine craftsmanship is not possible for you, I am unfortunately not the right builder for you.  

Due to the nature of who I am and how I'm made, building my pistols is not always a linear process. Neither has the development of the innovative approach I take in how I build my pistols. The experimentation, innovation, exploration outside of the "box" is a part of who I am; and those advancements are distilled into the pistol I craft for you. This is the only way that I can continue to push boundaries and further the craft.

Inexact predictability on a delivery date is the necessary cost of innovation in my shop. If you need to know, right down to the month
and year that your pistol will be delivered, we will not be a good fit for each other. There are many other businesses in the industry that will be able to get a product to you quicker and for less money.

If waiting for a full house pistol from me is simply not doable for you, may I suggest checking out my Custom Machine Services I offer for your stock 1911, which will give you a taste of Stan Chen Custom innovation, with fast turnaround.

However, those that can wait will be rewarded with something uniquely special, that will be enjoyed, treasured and passed down. To the best of my knowledge, no full house Stan Chen Custom pistol has ever been resold by its original owner. 

The List
If you are seriously interested in owning one of my creations, first let me say I am truly honored and grateful. Second, please give my shop a call so that we can get to know each other- we would love to "meet" you, and make sure that I am the right maker for you. Due to my backlog, I only take new orders on a limited basis, and my list may close from time to time.

Each pistol is quoted individually at the time of the build commencement, but during our conversation a current range can be discussed. 

If I have an opening, and you are still interested after our phone conversation, a deposit of $1,000 is required to be placed on the list. The deposit is 50% refundable should you decide to cancel your build before the build commences. When I am within a few months away from starting your build, together we will finalize your build spec's and quote. At that time, 50% of the remaining balance is due. The final remaining balance will be due when the pistol is ready to have its final finish applied.

A short time after that, you will receive in your hands something I believe you will treasure, then pass down.•  (970) 385-7900
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