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Cast Iron Cleaning and Seasoning Help With and Tips & Techniques For Cast Iron Cookware Restoration

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  #1  
Old 06-18-2013, 11:25 PM
Dave Brill Dave Brill is offline
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Default Stubborn pan

Just won't let go of those last few speckles of black. Got this on from a yard sale had, not kidding, 1/4" of gunk in places. Now I just can't get the last little bit. I've done several lye baths for days at a time, even set up a little elctrolosis tank. Lots of scrubbing too. What should I do? Kick it to the curb or...

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  #2  
Old 06-19-2013, 09:20 AM
Doug D. Doug D. is offline
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Default Re: Stubborn pan

You could either:

Throw it back in the lye bath, forget about it for a couple of weeks, and see if that works.

Try some full strength white vinegar sprayed directly on the spots, wait a few minutes, and scrub with some fine steel wool.

Failing that, just season and use it. The spots will blend in as the pan darkens.
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Old 06-19-2013, 03:06 PM
Dave Brill Dave Brill is offline
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Default Re: Stubborn pan

Thanks, Ill probably toss it back in the lye tank for now. The black spots arent just stains, they are raised deposits on the cooking surface and bottom, I kind of like this pan and would like to get it 100%. Not to mention I will feel like I lost if I cant clean it 100%.

Im thinking that my electrolysis setup could use some work. I can only get an hour or two before the amperage goes to zero. Then I have to dry my anode and grind it back to bare metal. Any suggestions there? Im using a strip of 5 x 14 x 1/16 steel sheet and a 10A 12V charger on one side at a time.
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  #4  
Old 06-19-2013, 03:31 PM
Doug D. Doug D. is offline
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Default Re: Stubborn pan

I like that vintage of Lodge as well-- heavier castings, but still being polished. And often found at bargain prices.

I use 10 amps, but my anode is a piece of sheet metal roughly 18x20. I only occasionally scrape it down with a 5" putty knife, flip it over to the other side after some number of uses, and when it begins to rot through, I replace it.
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  #5  
Old 08-18-2013, 09:27 PM
CPorter CPorter is offline
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Default Re: Stubborn pan

I have found that after a few uses that lye loses strength, maybe a fresh batch is needed.
If it is fresh you could mix it a little more concentrated.
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  #6  
Old 08-19-2013, 11:20 AM
Steve Stephens Steve Stephens is offline
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Default Re: Stubborn pan

I have experienced some carbon deposits that don't want to come off. Many times I will resort to scraping off the carbon with an old 1" or 1-1/2" putty knife. You want to make sure you don't scratch the pan so an older knife that has some worn edges and corners is best. I'll also use a razor scraper but, again, be careful to not scratch the pan. Sometimes I will use 8 grit wet or dry paper (wet) to sand the inside of a pan clean of reluctant black carbon. A trip in the oven to at least 450 deg. will darken the now shiny surface. I don't sand on surfaces that were never polished.
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Old 08-28-2013, 07:33 PM
JeanC JeanC is offline
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Default Re: Stubborn pan

Hi. I have had a few pans like this, where a couple of spots just won't scrub clean. Sometimes a few weeks or more in the lye bath works, other times it doesn't.
It always bugs me too that I can't get it off. If it doesn't work after weeks in the bath I call it good. Season it a few times and start using it. After a little while she all blends in and you don't see it anymore.

Good luck. I've scrubbed so many pans now that a little bit of carbon that won't come off doesn't bother me anymore. But I get it....some pans are so perfect I expect them all to be. I've had a few stubborn ones too....it isn't worth the effort anymore to me. Not after seeing how it does blend in and if it doesn't come off with all the scrubbing and a month in the bath I future it isn't going to come off in my food either.

And after a few weeks of using it I forget which pans I had trouble with now.
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  #8  
Old 08-29-2013, 08:27 PM
Dave Brill Dave Brill is offline
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Default Re: Stubborn pan

Thanks, I have a way better electrolysis set up now I may blast it for a while and see if that helps...
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