Here's a cast iron question

Discussion in 'Ruffit's Domestic & Wild Game Cooking/ Recipe Foru' started by Alpo, Aug 29, 2012.

  1. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    People always say, "Go to the flea market, or the thrift store, to get your cast iron. The older stuff is SO much better than the new stuff".

    Most of the iron I've seen at flea markets and thrift stores has been spray painted black, because idiots use it for decorations.

    Is there any way to safely and completely remove the paint, so you can cook on it again, without killing yourself?

    I thought of sanding, but since it is porous, seems like surface paint removal would not get it all. Damn sure would not want to use any toxic "paint strippers".
  2. howlnmad

    howlnmad Well-Known Member

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    If you have access, try sandblasting.
  3. shorter260513

    shorter260513 New Member

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    could you burn it off
  4. bamajoey

    bamajoey Active Member

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    You can build a fire and burn it off, then reseason it. You can also clean cast iron in the oven on the "clean cycle", although I wouldn't put anything in the oven with paint on it.
  5. howlnmad

    howlnmad Well-Known Member

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    The thing is to get the paint out of the pores. I wouldn't want to eat from it either.

    I picked up a 4 quart dutch oven with lid that someone had painted white on the outside and black on the inside. I didn't want to do it but now it"s regulated for melting lead. I would have really rather been able to clean it up and use it in the kitchen and at camp. :(
  6. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    That's another worry I have about buying used.

    Did some previous owner use it for melting lead?
  7. 76Highboy

    76Highboy Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Ya, I agree. I wonder what people might use them for too. The new stuff by Lodge is top notch in my opinion. I do hear alot of people say that the older stuff is better, but to be honest my Lodge cast iron cookware will out last me anyway so it doesn't matter.
  8. 25yretcoastie

    25yretcoastie New Member

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    Lodge is good maybe not as good as the old stuff but it can be spendy. But then again you get what u pay for, do you really want to go cheap to eat?
  9. BETH

    BETH Well-Known Member

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    has anyone used the seasoned steel by Lodge
  10. Deacon_Man

    Deacon_Man Member

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    Used stuff might have been used for a slop jar. Just sayin
  11. 76Highboy

    76Highboy Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Mine Dutch oven is Lodge.
  12. jbrescue

    jbrescue New Member

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    Same here, Lodge makes some pretty good stuff.
  13. shorter260513

    shorter260513 New Member

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    a good hot fire will get all the paint off anything I get used I build a hot fire and toss it in the middle and let the fire burn out pull it off while its hot fire up the oven and start seasoning Ill rinse it off spray the entire thing with pam throw it in the oven get it hot spray it wipe it do that 5 or 6 times and your ready for some good cornbread or fried taters
  14. dad2thebone

    dad2thebone New Member

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    I have been going through the same thing Alpo. Used is way cheaper but what was it used for before. I dont need a decoration i need cookware!
  15. CCHolderinMaine

    CCHolderinMaine Active Member

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    The trick is to find old used that wasn't used for something you don't want to eat. Sandblasting is a good option. Burning off scares me, depends on what they used for paint. You might only burn off pigments, but leave behind some "unpalatable" compounds, particularly if they were painted with some sort of "heat resistant" paint. Good advice is a tip dad gave me. Never be afraid to buy the best, you'll always be happy with it. Yes, old cast iron can be great, but there are new manufactures that make quality cast products today that cook every bit as well as old, and safely too.
  16. mjp28

    mjp28 Well-Known Member

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    I'm not real sure about "fixing" a good cast iron skillet or dutch oven once it's painted I've never done it but if I were going to try it I'd put it into a really hot fire outside. Once cool I'd carefully reseason it.

    Before using your cast iron skillet or cookware again for the first time, you want to season it. It's a lot easier than it sounds. Before using your cast iron skillet for the first time, you want to coat it with oil (vegetable, olive, etc.) and place upside down in a preheated oven at 350 degrees, I've heard people using even higher temps up to 500. Personal preference I guess but I'd want a good cast iron skillet to begin with!

    Put a cookie sheet or aluminum foil under it in the oven to catch any drippings. Bake in the oven for one hour, then cut the oven off and allow the skillet to cool down to room temperature. This is easy to do if you leave it there overnight. Periodically, you may want to "re-season" your cast iron skillet or cookware using this same method.

    My grandmother used heavy cast iron skillets of various sizes forever and generally just cleaned them with a paper or cloth towel.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2012
  17. Oldeyes

    Oldeyes Member

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    After fiddle dicking around for years with virtually every cooking oil or grease out there in a cast iron seasoning application I finally settled on peanut oil. It goes on easy and lasts a long time. Peanut oil has a fairly high flash point and once the lower level volatile hydrocarbons are burned off in the one hour 350 degree oven baking process, a fairly hard shell non-stick protective cooking surface remains after the pan cools in the oven. And then once a good hard shell coating has been applied, I also found that I can even touch up the non-stick cooking surface with a light paper towel wiped on coating of peanut oil applied to the cooking surface over a moderate (very lightly smoking) heat right on top of the range. The quicky 15-20 minute non-stick cooking surface repair process generates fairly acrid smoke, but the process works.
  18. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    Folks, if you want to talk about how to season cast iron, there's another thread talking about how to cook in and how to season cast iron.

    Put your thoughts there.

    This thread is about how to remove paint.
  19. Old Grump

    Old Grump New Member

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    Bingo we have a winner here or at least another shooter doing it my way. Nice hot camp fire and toss the pan in, keep fire going and don't take pan out till fire is out.

    I used to re charge my pans this way because my mother in law bless her little pea picking heart was not satisfied till every pot and pan in our house was sparkly shiny gleaming white. I'd toss in some bacon and lay it right on the fire and let the pan fry till the bacon was gone with the wind. Let cool, wipe off with a paper towel or hunk of wadded up newspaper and hang it back up again.

    I finally learned to hide it in the attic when I knew she was coming. Warning don't let youngster see where you hid it because he will make brownie points with Granny for showing her where it is.

    I'd do the same with the paint job pan, burn it off then dump oil or lard or a slab of bacon into the pan and do it again. I do believe I would get it sand blasted first though. The more you get off physically the fewer molecules of toxic substances you will have to deal with later. My drill and several wire brush heads have done away with a lot of rust before I did my pans. Then I found high speed reversible air drill that works even better using the same brushes.
  20. mjp28

    mjp28 Well-Known Member

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    Yes and after removing paint it's a good idea to reseason right.