Cast iron pans....what to get.

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  • pitdogg2
    pitdogg2 Posts: 20,789
    Round steel brush for your drill save the elbow and hands.
  • delkal
    delkal Posts: 764
    edited November 2019
    I received some pre 1960s lodge cast iron today. 3 dutch ovens (8, and 14), couple of skillets and sauce pans.

    I have some rehab to do on them. They were my grandfather's and have sat rusted for a bit. Got some vinegar and steel wool. Will tackle it tomorrow.

    Vinegar doesn't work. When rehabbing pans you want to use lye to get rid of the thick black crud. Find a plastic container the pans will fit in and put maybe 1/8 to 1/4 cup lye to 2-3 gallons of water (search the internet). I never measured but I would start out low and if nothing happens overnight I would add more lye. Most pans will just wipe clean after a couple days soaking but occasionally you will get some that needs some extra scrubbing and soaking. WEAR GLOVES AND BE CAREFUL. You can also use a spray oven cleaner just make sure it has lye as an ingredient. This is handy for an occasional pan or two.

    When you are done wash the pans well with soap and water then you will need to season them.

    Pans with a lot of thick crud usually come out looking like new. The crud protects it from rust. Light rust spots can be removed with fine Emory paper but pits are difficult to get rid of and impossible by hand. Even with an orbital sander or a wheel on a drill it can be a lot of work and it is never perfect.
  • pitdogg2
    pitdogg2 Posts: 20,789
    edited November 2019
    The type of brush this guy used is what I used. You can get one for drill or angle grinder. Do not use brass use steel or stainless steel only. I also no longer use hydrogenated type of grease. I've found that vegetable or canola oil works for me just as well. When i wash in hot water after use I always dry completely by using the stove just until all water is gone then let cool in place.

  • pitdogg2 wrote: »
    The type of brush this guy used is what I used. You can get one for drill or angle grinder. Do not use brass use steel or stainless steel only. I also no longer use hydrogenated type of grease. I've found that vegetable or canola oil works for me just as well. When i wash in hot water after use I always dry completely by using the stove just until all water is gone then let cool in place.


    Yeah I prefer Vegatable oil or canola oil over shortening. However I do have all 3 ha.

    I have a newer lodge that I have used about everyday for the last 3 years or so. It's quite the performer and has some good seasoning built up after all this time.

    Made steaks last night then chorizo and eggs for breakfast. Love these things.
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  • treitz3
    treitz3 Posts: 15,300
    codycatalist, you had mentioned vinegar to get rid of rust. I am probably late in responding to this thread, as you may already be done restoring all of the pans but I just wanted to let you know what vinegar does and what it doesn't do. @delkal touched on it already. In those videos posted above, vinegar will not restore them alone.

    The reason for the vinegar is actually to stop flash rusting of the CI pan when brought back to its original iron (no seasoning at all) condition. Flash rusting is actually pretty cool looking, as I saw it with my own eyes rusting right in front of me within less than a half a minute when I realized I had left the vinegar spray in a location other than right next to the sink after washing off the lye. The vinegar still took the flash rust off without having to re-strip the pan.

    If they are badly rusted, they may be pitted but no worries. The pits will fill in over time and you can't replace the memories that came with the pans.

    Tom
    ~ In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence. ~

    ~ I have found excellence ~

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  • treitz3
    treitz3 Posts: 15,300
    I'd love to get my hands on some like these....beautiful, like art work...

    afcxrh2t56ot.png

    Tom
    ~ In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence. ~

    ~ I have found excellence ~

    ~ The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction ~

  • treitz3
    treitz3 Posts: 15,300
    So, for those of you that have a collection and need a cast iron pan in every size? Lodge just came out with a new pan. It only weighs in at a cool 14,000 pounds.

    u1ltq12vz343.png
    "treitz3 wrote:
    Older CI, so long as it hasn't been warped, damaged by fire cleaning or had lead contamination is generally preferred over the new stuff, unless you are looking at Finex or similar product.
    Yeah, I'd like to add a note on this statement. This was written when Finex had just started to become popular and everyone was raving about them. As time has marched on, it seems that they are having a plethora of issues with the patina delaminating from the pan. As a result, I no longer can recommend these.

    I still have my Tramontina CI dutch oven set, (no chips) and now use them often. Also made a significant upgrade to my pepper mill. I did end up getting another set of CS pans from Misen but I have not seasoned, nor have I used them yet.

    Doug, are you still using your CI pan regularly?

    Tom


    ~ In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence. ~

    ~ I have found excellence ~

    ~ The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction ~

  • mhardy6647
    mhardy6647 Posts: 29,733
    Last year, our son gave us a little Lodge-branded scraper and soft-ish brush for "cleaning out" cast iron pans in a responsible manner. He & his wife are pretty serious foodies, and he in particular is big into cast iron cookware of all kinds.
    This has been a boon for us, as he bought a bunch of used Le Creuset cookware when he started on this journey, and he's since replaced most of it with new (or better) pieces... and passed their surplus pieces to us.
    The stuff will absolutely last forever, and it is a pleasure to cook in -- using gas flames, too. Don't tell Greta! :#

  • steveinaz
    steveinaz Posts: 19,476
    I have a Stargazer 10.5" skillet coming....
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  • treitz3
    treitz3 Posts: 15,300
    Oh, I had a brain f*rt the other night when I followed up on this thread. I can also recommend Smithey cast iron cookware, if you are looking for new and smooth CI cookware but just like the Finex? They command a hefty price tag. I have not heard/read reports of the Smithey's having a delamination issue with the patina.

    But....(there is always a but)....you can pay $3-$400 for an old Griswold in mint condition that still lays flat or you can go with the newer ground (smooth) CI pans/cookware. They are both about the same price. One is just a tad bit older than the other (by like, 70 years).

    Steve, I haven't heard of a Stargazer yet. Congrat's on that one! Looks to be a nice pan and I like the extra room offered on the 2nd handle. Let me know please if it steams the food or sears it. The angle of the sidewalls look like they would steam - versus sear but that can be a fine line. One that you will never know until you actually use the pan. Another thing I am curious about is, how easy is the "flip" or toss?

    I did order 2 Prep'd CI pans as well but haven't gotten around to seasoning them yet, so they have sat unused. They are not ground smooth and they are very heavy, so I do expect a long warm up time but a great sear. I bought these for searing steaks on the rocket grill outside or for regular grill duty when I am cooking things that will slip through the grill grates. I'll fill you all in on those when I get around to seasoning them and getting them into action.

    Tom
    ~ In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence. ~

    ~ I have found excellence ~

    ~ The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction ~

  • audioluvr
    audioluvr Posts: 4,182
    This is a good vintage #10 skillet. Sits flat if you are using an electric / induction stove. 1060B's were cast in the early 1930's. Best quality castings IMHO and when tapped will sing like a church bell.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/N0-10-Cast-iron-Wagner-Ware-Sidney-0-Skillet-Pn-1060-/275040993318?mkcid=16&mkevt=1&_trksid=p2349624.m46890.l49286&mkrid=711-127632-2357-0
    Cambridge Audio 851N Streamer/DAC
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    B&K M200 Sonata monoblocks refreshed and upgraded
    Belles 350A Reference modded with Mundorf Supreme caps
    Polk SDA 1C's modded / 1000Va Dreadnaught
    Wireworld Silver Eclipse IC's and speaker cables
    Harman Kardon T65C w/Grado Gold. (Don't laugh. It sounds great!)


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  • treitz3
    treitz3 Posts: 15,300
    skillet does hot sit, flat has no cracks or repairs

    I'd like that translated into plain English. I read that as "Skillet does not sit flat". Still a good pan but not for an induction or smooth top stove. This would be a great user on a gas grill or range though. This may explain the low price. FWIW.

    I have also heard great things about this company (if you are looking for new) - FWIW - https://butterpatindustries.com/products/the-lili

    Tom
    ~ In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence. ~

    ~ I have found excellence ~

    ~ The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction ~

  • audioluvr
    audioluvr Posts: 4,182
    Cambridge Audio 851N Streamer/DAC
    Belles 21A Pre modded with Mundorf Supreme caps
    B&K M200 Sonata monoblocks refreshed and upgraded
    Belles 350A Reference modded with Mundorf Supreme caps
    Polk SDA 1C's modded / 1000Va Dreadnaught
    Wireworld Silver Eclipse IC's and speaker cables
    Harman Kardon T65C w/Grado Gold. (Don't laugh. It sounds great!)


    There is about a 5% genetic difference between apes and men …but that difference is the difference between throwing your own poo when you are annoyed …and Einstein, Shakespeare and Miss January.

    by Dr. Sardonicus
  • treitz3
    treitz3 Posts: 15,300
    treitz3 wrote: »
    I did order 2 Prep'd CI pans as well but haven't gotten around to seasoning them yet, so they have sat unused. They are not ground smooth and they are very heavy, so I do expect a long warm up time but a great sear. <SNIP>
    Correction - I took a look tonight and they are, in fact, smooth on the sides and on the bottom of the interior.

    Tom

    ~ In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence. ~

    ~ I have found excellence ~

    ~ The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction ~

  • Upstatemax
    Upstatemax Posts: 2,530
    Still using my De Buyer pans and still loving them.

    Actually, I’m going to be buying more for the remote, off grid cabin we just bought.
    Living room:
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  • audioluvr
    audioluvr Posts: 4,182
    pitdogg2 wrote: »
    The type of brush this guy used is what I used. You can get one for drill or angle grinder. Do not use brass use steel or stainless steel only. I also no longer use hydrogenated type of grease. I've found that vegetable or canola oil works for me just as well. When i wash in hot water after use I always dry completely by using the stove just until all water is gone then let cool in place.


    Just watched this video. Funny! The scrubbing with table salt is how they did it in the pioneer days. I remember my great grandmother doing that. I still have her "Erie" #12 that was given to her by her grandmother. She would use lard, tallow or bacon grease to season skillets.
    Cambridge Audio 851N Streamer/DAC
    Belles 21A Pre modded with Mundorf Supreme caps
    B&K M200 Sonata monoblocks refreshed and upgraded
    Belles 350A Reference modded with Mundorf Supreme caps
    Polk SDA 1C's modded / 1000Va Dreadnaught
    Wireworld Silver Eclipse IC's and speaker cables
    Harman Kardon T65C w/Grado Gold. (Don't laugh. It sounds great!)


    There is about a 5% genetic difference between apes and men …but that difference is the difference between throwing your own poo when you are annoyed …and Einstein, Shakespeare and Miss January.

    by Dr. Sardonicus
  • pitdogg2
    pitdogg2 Posts: 20,789
    She would use lard, tallow or bacon grease to season skillets.
    I'm sure my grandparents and great-grandparents did as well.
  • rooftop59
    rooftop59 Posts: 7,448
    treitz3 wrote: »
    skillet does hot sit, flat has no cracks or repairs

    I'd like that translated into plain English. I read that as "Skillet does not sit flat". Still a good pan but not for an induction or smooth top stove. This would be a great user on a gas grill or range though. This may explain the low price. FWIW.

    I have also heard great things about this company (if you are looking for new) - FWIW - https://butterpatindustries.com/products/the-lili

    Tom

    I asked the seller, and they offered me a slight discount along with the qualification that it does NOT sit flat but indeed has a sight wobble 😂
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  • mhardy6647
    mhardy6647 Posts: 29,733
    edited January 20
    oops -- sorry! :/
  • audioluvr
    audioluvr Posts: 4,182
    Well shoot! Need to work on my "idiot" translation.
    Cambridge Audio 851N Streamer/DAC
    Belles 21A Pre modded with Mundorf Supreme caps
    B&K M200 Sonata monoblocks refreshed and upgraded
    Belles 350A Reference modded with Mundorf Supreme caps
    Polk SDA 1C's modded / 1000Va Dreadnaught
    Wireworld Silver Eclipse IC's and speaker cables
    Harman Kardon T65C w/Grado Gold. (Don't laugh. It sounds great!)


    There is about a 5% genetic difference between apes and men …but that difference is the difference between throwing your own poo when you are annoyed …and Einstein, Shakespeare and Miss January.

    by Dr. Sardonicus
  • CottageChz
    CottageChz Posts: 250
    These flat/smooth cast iron pans people are posting look really nice. I didn’t really know those were a thing, but makes sense. I have a big 12” skillet, but it is a textured cast iron. I see one of these flat ones in my future…
  • steveinaz
    steveinaz Posts: 19,476
    ANY cast iron skillet can work, but the cheaper ones tend to have a rough finish, and are harder to season properly because of it. Some people sand them flat first, then season them.
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  • txcoastal1
    txcoastal1 Posts: 12,196
    Favorite steaks are cast iron to oven....with mushrooms sauce

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  • NotaSuv
    NotaSuv Posts: 3,472
    Favorite steaks are cast iron to oven.....you bet and they come out perfect everytime.......