Restoring Cast Iron Skillets

Patrick

aka Fidodie
Staff member
#1
I could swear someone on here made a hobby or living of restoring cast iron cookware.
Was it my imagination?

I have a set of 4 i'd like to hand-off to someone experienced.
We put them in the attic 29 years ago or so, and just re-discovered them.
not horrible shape, just very dry looking.

Looks easy enough on youtube, but there are always some gotchas.
 
#6
Gimme gimme.

I use an electrolysis bath in the garage, hooked up to a big f-in battery charger.
wont that fuck with the surface? I have to look for a diston saw plate I have that this was done to and it messed with the color, while its not toxic idk what affect this will have on the ability to retain its seasoned surface.

@fidodie if they aren't fucked just used steel wool and sand paper to clean them up and cook some ribeyes to seal the deal.
 

one piece crank

Well-Known Member
#8
Remove the rust, basically cleaning down to the cast iron. Then you need to season them - that’s the black non-stick surface you’re used to seeing. Don’t cook on raw cast iron without seasoning them.
 

Patrick

aka Fidodie
Staff member
#9
my wife wants to keep them, so i'm going down the steel wool path!!!
i think i have an attachment for my drill.....
 

jklett

Well-Known Member
#13
Don’t even need a vat, just Brillo then Dawn then hot water rinse, dry, cook bacon. All good.
That's what I'd do! Even with some minor rust the seasoning kind of seals it in as long as there isn't any loose scale. I have a jar of bacon/sausage drippings in the fridge that I can give you some of if you want to season them in the oven since you said you had a bunch to do.
 

Patrick

aka Fidodie
Staff member
#14
That's what I'd do! Even with some minor rust the seasoning kind of seals it in as long as there isn't any loose scale. I have a jar of bacon/sausage drippings in the fridge that I can give you some of if you want to season them in the oven since you said you had a bunch to do.
thanks! we never are short on bacon & grease. i'll probably use grapeseed oil.
it is a set of 4. pics to follow.
 

serviceguy

Well-Known Member
#18
I am a big fan of rust remover...bought a ton over the years to rejuvenate car parts. I buy the concentrated one that you can dilute to your liking, saves on shipping...water!
 

Karate Monkey

Well-Known Member
#20
wont that fuck with the surface? I have to look for a diston saw plate I have that this was done to and it messed with the color, while its not toxic idk what affect this will have on the ability to retain its seasoned surface.

@fidodie if they aren't fucked just used steel wool and sand paper to clean them up and cook some ribeyes to seal the deal.
Nah, it doesn't impact the surface any more than how effed it was from the rust anyway. Using an iron/steel plate and a bath of water with washing soda, it's about as safe as can be. The real plus is that it flakes the old seasoning off. I've done it with a few pans (Wagner/Griswold/no-name American) that looked terrible, and they came out fine. I can post a pic of my Griswold that has been in constant rotation for the last 1.5 years if you're interested.

It does seem to affect polished metal differently (or alloys, like saws). I used it on a couple of saw plates and it didn't work very well...that said, the saw was toast anyway, I just wanted to see what happened. Looks like crap, cuts okay after sharpening. Just remember that cast iron [should be] is just iron, so that matters when you are trying to electrolytically remove some kind of plating/surface treatment.