Problem is, any "artisan" with a short turn around almost always is no artisan, which is why he doesn't have a backlog of customers.
Real artisans are in in real demand, and that means a long list of customers waiting for their services.
The people who don't have long lists and can get to it fast are almost always people you don't want touching your guns. This is something you often don't find out until it's too late and your gun is botched up.
All good gunsmiths are very busy these days, even more so then usual for artisan level people.
One question is: checkering on what guns?
It's often easier to find good people who do 1911 pistols, less easy to find people to do revolvers.
Assuming it's Colt 1911 pistols, some choices who are artisans, but aren't going to be fast are:
Colt, Cylinder & Slide Shop, Frank Glenn, Wilson's, APW/Cogan, Elite Custom Guns, Coal Creek Armory.
Always remember that local reputation is really no recommendation. All too many local people who give great recommendations are incapable of recognizing quality work from crappy work.
Lou Rosso, who still does all checkering by hand... and is a very serious man about doing it completely and right, might not be too backlogged. This is assuming he's still alive... he's been a professional 1911 smith since the late 50s.
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