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Old 04-02-2014, 07:20 AM   #71
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Steel is more ductile than is cast iron, that is, it will bend, stretch, and has a certain amount of elasticity. The reason cast iron will crack/shatter, is that it doesn't have that same property. It is more like stone, or glass. Thermal shock can crack cast iron in the same way it shatters glass. As materials are heated and cooled, they expand or contract. With a material like aluminum or copper, this isn't a problem, as they are great conductors of heat, and tend to change size at an even amount, all over. But ferrous substances, i.e. cast iron/steel, area poor conductors of heat. Therefore, the outside starts expanding/contacting before the middle can do the same. The change size at a different rate. The outside surface is changing very quickly, while the middle is resisting that change. And as cast iron has almost no ability to stretch, the forces become strong enough to shatter the metal, similar to pressure cracks on large, frozen bodies of water.

Steel, on the other hand, responds to the same treatment by warping. The metal doesn't fail catastrophically.

Also, that lack of ductile strength is the reason you can shatter cast iron with blunt force. People who work metal with chisels know that striking metal against metal can cause bits to break and fly away from the tools at high speed. This is why eye protection is a must for metal workers.

So, don't immerse very hot cast iron, or steel pots and pans in ice cold water. Don't hit them with a hammer, and if you have a very hard headed partner, don't whack him/her with a pan. You might crack the metal.

Seeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:20 PM   #72
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It does not take red hot heat and ice water to cause a CI pan to shatter from thermal shock. Taking it out of a 500 degree oven and plunging it into a sink full of water could just as easily do it and that would be a reasonable thing for someone who did not know better to do. I have also heard of them shattering when being dropped on hard surfaces from a height (dropping on a stone floor from a counter), but I do not recall the specific details so I can't comment further on that.
All those things describe to me somebody too stupid to be allowed to own cookware.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:55 PM   #73
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So only stupid people drop heavy things?

You had better be careful. All those things describe things people here have done as I have read all of them on this site over the years.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:27 AM   #74
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so...forgetting to turn off the burner that you turn on for a minute to dry your CI or whatever metal pan and forget it was on high heat for quite a while and you dunk it in cold water and accidentally drop it on a tile floor. Cracks in the pan might possibly appear, depending on the metal alloy properties of said pan? That's getting too deep into the properties of metals and heat if you ask me.
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Old 04-03-2014, 07:51 AM   #75
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so...forgetting to turn off the burner that you turn on for a minute to dry your CI or whatever metal pan and forget it was on high heat for quite a while and you dunk it in cold water and accidentally drop it on a tile floor.
Something tells me you would not be able to forget you had those on the burner then dunk them in water. The 3rd degree burns on your hand would be a pretty good reminder.
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Old 04-03-2014, 09:49 AM   #76
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cracks in cast iron pans? someone did something wrong. CI pans are cheap. Scrap metal cheap.
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Old 04-06-2014, 04:21 PM   #77
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I've been working on my old neglected Griswold CI skillet, and think that I'm now beginning to see some progress.

I scrubbed it with a wire brush, and that didn't seem to help too much, so yesterday I sprayed it with oven cleaner (wearing goggles and gloves), and put it in a trash bag overnight.

This morning I got it out, rinsed it off, and started scrubbing again. That seemed to help loosen some of the crud. Here is a pic of the outside, and all that nasty buildup. Ugh. On the right side of the pan, there's a barely visible path of pre-gunk that has started to release, compared to the left side which wasn't scrubbed as much.
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Old 04-06-2014, 04:29 PM   #78
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Here's another pic of part of the inside, and the handle. The '9' on the handle was not even visible before. There seems to be hope for this.

I was inspired by salt and pepper's yard sale finds, unfortunately they are in a different thread and I keep going back and forth. I'm thinking I should try s & p's method of soaking it in hot water, vinegar, and dawn dishwashing liquid, and that may help loosen stuff up even more...? For a short time, of course....don't want to add rust to it.
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