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  #1  
Old 01-19-2016, 03:02 AM
Tony Gilliam Tony Gilliam is offline
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Location: Mansfield Ohio
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Default Your thoughts on blasting????

I once had a couple skillets from Bass Pro Shop. They were never used and never seasoned. They just hung on the wall until they were completely rusted over. I asked my uncle who worked at a foundry to sand blast them for me. When I got them back they were nice and shiny but had lost all of the detail on the bottom and were so rough, they eventually got thrown away. Yes "The Hard Way" is how I learn.
Now move forward about 20 years, I have used several different blasting sands to achieve different effects, a mild abrasive to frost glass, a medium abrasive to etch paint for a re-spray, up to a harsh abrasive to remove chrome.
Last week I bought a stack of 4 skillets for $5, so I thought I would just blast them. I used a medium abrasive, it took off all the seasoning and rust in an acceptable amount of time. I was left with 4 skillets that were foundry fresh and actually uncovered a couple letters and numbers that were so faint I'm not sure other methods would have uncovered them.
Please don't beat me up on this. I would never put a valuable skillet in the blaster. I would hate to sand off a ghost mark. But a modern piece that is badly rusted and will only be a user. Sure would.
After a few seasoning, my cheap skillets look awesome and cook awesome.
Thanks for reading and sorry if I got anyone's dander up. Tony
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  #2  
Old 01-19-2016, 08:15 AM
CJMunnich CJMunnich is offline
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Location: Marengo, IL
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

No dander, but I have seen some pieces that were blasted and were rough to the touch, so I passed them up. I have wondered if you used the proper media and pressure if that would work. Got any pics?
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  #3  
Old 01-19-2016, 09:15 AM
Ty L. Ty L. is offline
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Location: Milwaukee, WI
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

For vintage pieces that aren't worth much (3-notch Lodges, unmarked Wagners, etc) I'll cheat and put them on the gas grill set to high for an hour. Turns the old seasoning to ash and I've never warped or cracked a pan.

Since blasting removes some of the iron I'd never do it on a vintage piece, but if I don't find a reasonably priced vintage long griddle by summer I won't hesitate to buy & blast a brand new Lodge.
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Old 01-19-2016, 10:35 AM
Tony Gilliam Tony Gilliam is offline
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Location: Mansfield Ohio
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

Sorry, No camera, so no pics. I too have seen skillets blasted to a point of being very rough.
The 4 that I did turned out very smooth, I even spent a little more time on the edges to remove grind marks from the foundry, but when I pulled them out the grind marks remained.
On an unmarked 8" I found a Q on the handle and on the bottom of the pan. They were both invisible to me before blasting, and now that its had 2 seasonings and a couple pork chops ran through it, they are barely detectable again.
I've spent some time building hotrods and have seen many different types of blasting media. Some so mild that they wouldn't remove seasoning and some so harsh they would blast through a bumper.
I am very happy with the results I got using a medium grit sand on these skillets. Tony
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  #5  
Old 01-19-2016, 12:03 PM
DougH DougH is offline
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Gilliam View Post
I was left with 4 skillets that were foundry fresh and actually uncovered a couple letters and numbers that were so faint I'm not sure other methods would have uncovered them.
To this point, electrolysis and Lye bath do not remove any iron whatsoever, so they would have also uncovered these faint markings.

To your general question about blasting, I think you already know the answer. It's not an accepted safe method for anything vintage and/or collectible because it can alter the surface. Your gentler methods may be safe enough, but you say yourself that you wouldn't do it on anything valuable...so you already know. Doing it on modern pieces that are easily replaceable if you screw something up...go for it, nothing but money lost if something goes wrong.
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  #6  
Old 01-19-2016, 01:31 PM
BenjaminO BenjaminO is offline
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Location: Residing in the calm sunshine of Santa Cruz, California
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

This is all well and good, but I think you are missing the point that electrolysis is just as easy as blasting and requires less equipment. I can see the appeal if you already are blasting things on a daily basis, but don't presume that your actually saving any time or effort considering how simple and quick electrolysis cleaning can be and that it presents no risk of damaging anything, while being able to completely remove everything that's not iron
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  #7  
Old 01-20-2016, 06:35 AM
Tony Gilliam Tony Gilliam is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Mansfield Ohio
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

Thanks for your thoughts guys, I appreciate it. I am new to collecting CI and will admit, I am somewhat intimidated by the thought of messing with Lye. It is something I have zero experience with.
I am working on an electrolysis tank but right now my garage is about 20 deg. and I'm thinking it would freeze. I really don't have another spot to do it that my pets won't get into, so I have to wait for spring.
Thanks Tony
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  #8  
Old 01-20-2016, 06:54 AM
JustinR JustinR is offline
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

Lye is basically drain cleaner. Cautious, yes. But no need to be scared. Using proper safety measures will ensure everything will go well. Also, Its been about 5 degrees here for 2 weeks and my e tank hasnt frozen. Not sure of its effectiveness but its still in liquid form.
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Old 01-20-2016, 03:47 PM
KevM KevM is offline
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

Quote:
Originally Posted by JustinR View Post
Lye is basically drain cleaner. Cautious, yes. But no need to be scared. Using proper safety measures will ensure everything will go well. Also, Its been about 5 degrees here for 2 weeks and my e tank hasnt frozen. Not sure of its effectiveness but its still in liquid form.
fish tank heaters
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  #10  
Old 01-21-2016, 12:52 AM
Stan D Stan D is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: McLean VA
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Default Re: Your thoughts on blasting????

I've had good luck with Easy Off oven cleaner as my source of lye. Spray it on,stick it in a trash bag to contain the fumes, and come back to it in a couple hours. I've never had an issue with getting it on my hands, I just don't handle it for more that a minute or so.

I can't help but think that your first blast experience was more of rust damage than blast damage.
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