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jasonjax 01-13-2012 12:52 PM

Quickly put cast iron back into cooking shape?
I've got a girddle I'd like to cook on tonight. It has been sitting out on the porch rusting for a couple of years. It definitely appears to just be surface rust. Anyone out there have a quick way to whip that sucker back into shape for cooking?

Steel wool? EZ-off?

kyle corn 01-13-2012 01:10 PM

Steel wool will take a while. I'd say a wire brush on a grinder or drill, then when it's clean enough scrub it down with coarse kosher salt and some steel wool (just too remove any particles from the wire brush), then rinse. At that point coat in oil and put it in your oven for about an hour.

It's definitely doable to clean it up, but to get it done and ready to cook on in a day might be a stretch... I've seen Lodge griddles at Wal Mart for about $20...

El Pistolero 01-13-2012 01:10 PM

Just a good stiff brush should do the trick (I like those green scotchbright pads), rinse and dry quickly, then re-season and you're good to go.

caseydog 01-13-2012 02:04 PM

I reclaimed a cast iron pot from rust using some of those sanding sponges. I started with a course sponge, and went on to medium and finished with a fine sponge.

The sponges got into the corners well.


maxwell7 01-13-2012 03:29 PM

my go to method has been a self-cleaning oven. I have reclaimed 5 or 6 pans and pots that way. Pull out of oven ( when it releases )with soaked towel , and go after with steel wool. Clean up with soap and water with sos pad. Wash and rinse , then coat witrh oil,into oven at 350 for hr. ,cool down , and you are good to go! I promise it works VERY well!:becky:

jestridge 01-13-2012 03:42 PM

Wire brush on a 4" grinder

CoveLife 01-14-2012 03:09 PM

Burn it, if you have a propane frier stick it on there for a while, hit it with a brush, season with oil and cook away

Hofy 01-14-2012 06:27 PM

Electrolysis. I have used this method on several CI pans.

Beef 01-14-2012 06:32 PM

I second electrolysis. I use a solution of washing soda and water, and then use a battery charger. Remember the black lead goes to the cast iron, and the red lead goes to the piece of metal you want the rust to jump to. It can take days, though, so wire brush and rocksalt may have to work if you need it soon.

tish 01-14-2012 06:41 PM

Harvard and I were downsizing and tossing stuff from the basement this morning. We came across one of my old frying pans from before I met him. It was all rusty looking. He flipped it over, and said hey honey... this one's a Griswold. Don't toss that!! lol I took it upstairs and scrubbed it with a copper chore boy and hot water just to get rid of the surface rust. I rubbed it down with some oil, and stuck it in a 350* oven for an hour and a half. It's already starting to get black and shiny. Gotta love it! :wink:

jasonjax 01-14-2012 06:59 PM

I wound up using my Dremmel and a couple scrubbing brushes. I managed to get it back into pretty good shape after about half an hour of elbow grease, Dremmel, salt, scotch brite, and oil. About 45 minutes on the pellet pooper at around 480*.

I should have taken a before and after, but suffice to say it was completely covered in surface rust and then looked like this:

vafish 01-14-2012 07:36 PM

Cast Iron cleans up pretty well.

About five years ago we were at a scout camp, I wanted to cook the boys a cobbler but hadn't brought my DO along. Went up to the camp quarter master and asked for a DO. He handed me this nasty rusty thing that still had food in it from at least a year prior.

I found a nice oval fist sized creek stone and started scraping away, then moved to steel wool and a green scrubby pad. Dried it off, oiled it up and threw it on the fire to season.

Made an awesome cobbler with fresh blueberries. WE had plenty of left overs and shared with the camp staff. I also returned the DO cleaned and oiled.

I met one of the staff members 3 years later, he looked an me and said "hey you're the cobbler guy!"

tish 01-14-2012 08:50 PM

Great job, Jason! Dang thing looks like it was never out of service. You do good work!! :wink:

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