Current Direct Order ACW Lead Times: 4-7 Months (model and finishes vary)
Dealer Order Lead Times Vary

We have collected the most Frequently Asked Questions and made the answers available in the table below.  We pride ourselves on excellent communication and customer service so please feel free to use the Contact Us page if you have a question that is not on this list or on each corresponding model page and we will get back to you as soon as possible.  

You can place an order for your Alchemy Pistol through our website or by calling us at 724-524-1002

Once you pay your deposit we will begin your build and lead times vary based on the pistol and options selected.  After your Alchemy is complete, we will send a final bill and ship your gun to an FFL (Firearms Dealer) that you select.  They will do the transfer paperwork (for a small fee) and you can take your pistol home.

You can also check our dealer network to see if they have any Alchemy 1911’s in stock.

Well.. we are partial to the mags we provide but you can use pretty much any high quality 1911/2011 magazine as long as it’s to spec.    The only magazines that have known issues are Wilson Combat 9mm due to the feed lips being a bit too tall, and Wilson Combat 45acp when the plastic followers get worn out…. so we recommend avoiding those.  

Not all ammo is created equal and while we don’t recommend shooting “gun show” reloads, you should be fine with most factory ammunition. 

45acp pistols are setup for the OG recipe of 230gr at 850fps.  If you are shooting hotter or weaker ammo you may need to have your pistol re-sprung for optimal operation.  

9mm has a VERY wide range of muzzle energy, bullet shapes and powder burn rates.  Our 9mm pistols are sprung for a range of common ammunition from target loaded ammo at 350ft/lbs of muzzle energy to full power NATO spec 9mm of 124gr at 1250fps (430ft/lbs of Muzzle energy).   If you are shooting ammunition with more energy/faster burning powders, you may need to ave your gun re-sprung.  We recommend shooting at least 200 rounds of full power ammunition to break in your pistol before attempting to shoot anything below 350ft/lbs.    In our testing we have found Hornady XTP rounds to be significantly shorter than most JHP bullets on the market and as such they do have a tendency to nosedive in a fully loaded 10 round 9mm magazine due to the lack of support from the following rounds.  Federal HST and other more traditional sized JHPs do not exhibit this issue.

No, we fit our 45acp barrels tighter than Dick’s hatband for a reason.  Full lug contact and a nice *pop* when you unlock the gun helps to delay the timing and make it the most pleasant 45 you’ll ever shoot.  In fact, legend has it that if you shoot a “tight fit” ACW in 45acp enough, women will find you 10x more attractive, your lawn will always stay green and your children will respect you more.  More info on manipulating tight guns can be found here: https://youtu.be/4xPADAqp84M

9mm’s are naturally a bit easier to manipulate due to less spring pressure and lockup in the barrel fitting, however you should expect them to be a bit tighter that most other 9mm 1911s because we spring them for full power ammo (124 NATO).   Unless you’re Ronnie Coleman, you ain’t air racking an ACW….. and that’s how it should be.

If you live in a commie state, you need to check your gun roster and know all local laws before purchasing.  Commifornia has made it impossible to get our guns approved after the microstamp requirement of 2010, and mASSachusetts also has not allowed us onto their roster.

Lead time vary depending on the model, finish and how many orders we are currently working on.  You can see our current estimated lead times at the top of this page.  Your Alchemy Custom 1911 is built just for you.

We offer a lifetime warranty against manufacturers defects and stand behind our work 100%.  



All of our pistols are offered standard with a traditional hot salt blue finish that harkens back to the original finishing you would see on 1911s during the early part of the 20th century.  Hot salt bluing is probably the best looking finish for a 1911 and does require you maintain your pistol by keeping it relatively clean and keeping it oiled.  Well used ACWs will show honest wear (which looks amazing in our opinion) and common areas to find that are wherever your hand touches the pistol, on the sides of the grip safety, underneath the thumb safety, and around the slide stop.  We do a rigorous check to make sure you gun is free of blemishes when we ship it, but bear in mind these guns are meant to be shot and will show signs of use over time.  This is normal.


We also offer an optional Hard Chrome finish on our pistols that is more durable than bluing but still requires normal care and maintenance.   To get proper adhesion, chrome guns require a rougher media blast than Blued guns and we only polish flats on slides and non railed frames.


Short for Diamond Like Carbon, DLC is a hard surface layer of carbon atoms applied to the entire pistol in a vacuum chamber.  DLC is very hard and durable but it is still porous and needs to be kept oiled.  Due to the nature of DLC we only offer it on full bead blasted guns, the flats have a tendency to come out milky if we polish them.

Color Case Hardening

We send our CCH guns to Turnbull for Color Case Hardening…They are regarded as the best finished for Case Hardening using Bone Charcoal.  Here is what they say about the process:

Color case hardening (sometimes referred to as case-hardening, case color hardening, or surface hardening) is a heat treating process and one of the earliest ways of hardening lower-grade steel. Originally, this process used bone charcoal heated to an exact temperature. Afterwards, the parts were removed from the furnace and quenched. The process leaves a hard surface finish and a layer of colored carbon with beautiful color variations. While the process is very controlled and the results are predictable, the exact color combination and pattern is unique to each firearm.

This process is different from the potassium cyanide salt bath process, utilized by manufacturers in later times. This treatment produces different colors and patterns than the original, period-correct, bone color case hardening. Turnbull Restoration perfected its use of this original bone charcoal process decades ago, and is known throughout the world for its work in this area of gun restoration.

Alchemy Custom Weaponry pistols are guaranteed to an accuracy of better than 1.5 inches at 25 yards. Accuracy of any 1911 is dependent on the quality and consistency of the ammunition used. 

Our pistols are built for .45 ACP and 9mm

No. Rob Schauland does not accept gunsmithing requests on third party pistols. Mr. Schauland dedicates his time to designing and building his vision of the 1911, the Alchemy Custom Weaponry 1911 ’s found here on this website.

ACW frames and slides are unique! ACW frames and slides incorporate both traditional styling cues with ergonomic features such as a high cut front strap designed for both comfort and control perfected over many years of building custom 1911’s.ACW frames are made from U.S.A. forgings and machined here in America to our proprietary ACW print specifications. ACW slides are constructed in the U.S.A. from bar stock steel to ACW print specifications.

Mr. Schauland has either designed or hand-picked each and every component that goes into an ACW. All components are made in the U.S.A.  See more specifics on individual components here in the FAQ below.

The ACW grip safety is machined from USA sourced 4140 grade bar stock steel.

ACW barrels are made in the USA from 416R certified hammer forged stainless steel. Bushings are turned from 416 SS bar stock stainless steel.

The hammer, sear and strut are made precisely using EDM Wire technology machining. Disconnectors are constructed from tool steel.

The trigger used in an ACW 1911 is the best available trigger, at any price, according to Master Gunsmith Rob Schauland and a favorite among elite custom gunsmiths. The trigger design allows for a set screw set at the back of the trigger pad so there’s no hole in the face of the trigger to irritate your trigger finger.

ACW pistols use a custom made tactical 4140 steel thumb safety.

The ejector and extractor are made from 4140 bar stock steel. Both are made in the USA from an industry supplier considered to be “the best money can buy.”

Yes, magazine well is beveled. ACW pistols are meticulously gunsmith crafted 1911’s!

The trigger pull weight is set at 3.5-4# 

Of course! Barrels are hand fit and the rear of the frame and slide are blended by hand.

The front strap and mainspring housing are checkered at 25 LPI.  The checkering is designed for “carry comfort” with checkering at the middle smoothing to lines at the edges.  Just another unique design detail only on an ACW pistol and a trademark design of R. Schauland.

No. The only available options are those listed on the product page.  Please do not email us to ask for options not listed.  If you do not see it offered here, it is not available.

In general, Rob recommends a good quality C.L.P. such as MPro7 or Breakfree. In lieu of those, Mobil 1, Royal Purple, Redline, and Lucas Oil make fine products for keeping your gun properly lubricated. Lighter oils work best on tight guns. Thicker lubes slow down components and can lead to failures.

Welcome to ACW, where we make 1911s the old-school way.  Someone in the Government has decided you need to be over 21 to even LOOK at our pistols.  Also, some crazy Europeans deem it necessary to tell you our website uses cookies (not the chocolate chip Variety). Well, are you over 21, do you agree to have our cookies (we don’t share them with anyone), and are you READY to feast your eyes on the greatness of John Moses Browning?