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Old 01-20-2009, 12:03 AM   #11
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I have one more to add to the mix right now... this terribly rusty Wapak 10... was not sure how it would turn out...

Before:





After:





I wish I had a pic of it stripped. once I cleaned it up... the outside it a bit pitted (not too bad... just sort of a soft patina) but the inside is like glass.... just beautiful. I love this skillet. I have been working it hard testing what hurts seasoning and what helps. Its got to be nearly a century old and it cooks wonderfully. It is an awesome skillet and right now my favorite.

So out of this what have I learned.

One is the lower-temp shorter time seasoning methods are great if you want to show your skillet off because the produce a nice pretty even honey colered skillet but if you want to cook with it seriously they stink.

I find lard or bacon fat work best.... better than crisco and way better than oils.

I have given up on perfect even coloring... I get them there and then kill it.

I also understand more the seasoning will build over time.... when its new it is still pretty delicate so you are bound to occassionaly backtrack... no biggie easy to re-apply... basically I have learned not to worry. I always babied my CI before so afriad to hurt the seasoning but its rugged stuff. I like this because I am rough on things.

I really enjoy cleaning them up... taking some old piece of junk and restoring it to a great cooking tool.

Rust can be easier to get rid of than carbon build up but it can also reveal more damage... the icky build up protected the skillet

The whole process is definitley not as neat and straigtfoward as some people make it seem... at least not for me... its more of an ongoing process.

I have also come to hate oven cleaner.... but I dont have a self cleaning oven and its too cold to set up a lye bath outside.

I have some more in the works. I am going to experiment with grapeseed oil next.
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Old 01-20-2009, 01:13 PM   #12
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Yeah!

I told ya bacon fat/lard works best!
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Old 01-20-2009, 05:07 PM   #13
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LOL yes you were right.... I have been eating a lot of bacon & items fried in grease in the name of cast iron.... I need to make sure to keep things balanced or I wont live to see the skllets reach thier prime.

I did pick up some grapeseed oil today want to see what that's all about.
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Old 01-20-2009, 05:33 PM   #14
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Thanks for sharing this. I have never used cast iron but my Grandma and Grandpa did. My mom said her mom made the best potato kugel in hers. For me it is an issue of being able to lift some of it. lol
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Old 01-20-2009, 09:18 PM   #15
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my first piece of good cast iron was my German-Jewish step grandmothers Dutch Oven... it almost went to the estate sale... it is awesome but heavy... I can remember her great old school cooking every time I use it.

Its true the weight can be a problem. Some of the older skillets especially the "Erie" and "Wagner" (before they marked "Griswold" or "WagnerWare") are amazingly light. They weigh about half what a new skillet the same size does.... if you have a chance to snag one you may want to give it a go.... mint ones can be expensive but a little pitting on the bottom and they are cheap and cook just as good. My Erie 8 weighs 3.5 pounds... that USA chunkster weighs 5.5 for the same size skillet. Those 2 pounds make a difference. My mom has pretty bad arthritis and says she sees the day when she will have to fork over her Lodge and LeCreuset to me.... somehow I thinik she would rather erect a winch over the stove though.
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:14 PM   #16
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The only piece of cast iron that is weight-prohibitive to me is my 28lb dutch oven. But I still get that out on occasion. Just last weekend I didn't have anything big enough to do a 9lb pork butt besides that puppy!
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:25 PM   #17
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Looks good Pancho!

I restored two old skillets too. Both looked as bad as the Wapak 10 you have but on the inside. I just used sandpaper, brillo and any other abrasive I could find to sand all the junk off. I used veg oil to reseason, came out great. Totally non-stick.

I like the shape of the Wapak, looks neat.
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:27 PM   #18
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Oh....I'm sending over a Fiat for you to de-rust for me. lol
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:42 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeekinz View Post
Oh....I'm sending over a Fiat for you to de-rust for me. lol

LOL! we had a Fiat when I was a wee little kid... thing rusted away into thin air... just started disintegrating the minute it drove off the lot... pieces would come off in your hand... it was shortly replaced with a Toyota.

its annoying that the photo makes the bottom of the handle look rusty still but there is no visible rustiness there in realty.
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