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(YouTube)   So, subby bought a mouse sander as seen on YouTube videos to strip the seasoning off his Lodge cast iron pan - after further searching, I found a video showing someone doing the same thing with Easy Off oven cleaner. Anyone tried this?   (youtube.com) divider line
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534 clicks; posted to Food » on 24 Jan 2021 at 2:14 PM (11 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2021-01-24 10:06:47 AM  
Well to remove seasoning, just out it in the oven in the self cleaning mode. It'll cook off.

If you want an incredible pan though, sand through the grits to a mirror finish. Then season.

In the old days cast pans didn't come with a very smooth finish, so they'd surface them smooth.

Today, casting a lot better and they don't bother post finishing. So a pan from 1880 might be smoother than a new pan today.

I also like to use beef suet for seasoning.
 
2021-01-24 10:11:20 AM  
Amazon had a sale on a cheap mouse sander for $30, so I thought Why not? I don't know if this Easy Off in a garbage bag is an easier/better method though.

He also had a tip on avoiding rust on your pan once it's stripped too.
 
2021-01-24 10:13:13 AM  
Also, I don't know why the guy bothered with stripping the whole pan...bottom outside, handle, etc. since you're only interested in the cooking surface.
 
2021-01-24 10:18:28 AM  
wire wheel on your angle grinder works just as well.
 
2021-01-24 10:21:33 AM  
Lodge now pre seasons their pans.  I don't know why you would want to remove it.  I've got pans that are over 70 years old and have never been unseasoned.
 
2021-01-24 10:23:47 AM  
1. Turn gas grill onto HIGH.
2. Throw in the cast iron.
3. Drink 2 beers.
4. Turn off gas grill.

My method is clearly superior.
 
2021-01-24 10:25:04 AM  

Marcus Aurelius: 1. Turn gas grill onto HIGH.
2. Throw in the cast iron.
3. Drink 2 beers.
4. Turn off gas grill.

My method is clearly superior.


Would 3 beers also work, just for safety and to allow for different drinking speeds?
 
2021-01-24 10:25:47 AM  
Why are you removing it? If you need to, the self-cleaning mode as said above is a very easy way to do it.
Re-season with flax-seed oil in the oven at 400.
 
2021-01-24 10:26:13 AM  

oldernell: Lodge now pre seasons their pans.


Yes, that's the point.
 
2021-01-24 10:26:56 AM  
Also, my oven is a dinosaur, it has no self-cleaning option
 
2021-01-24 10:28:02 AM  
Using something like Easy Off on a porous surface like cast iron makes me wince.

Easy Off has more than just Sodium Hydroxide in it, and some of the other ingredients are moderately toxic (rather than just caustic). I'd assume most of the ingredients are fairly volatile, and will simple evaporate away, but my concern would be that residue left deep in the pores will be leached back to the surface when you reintroduce oil.
 
2021-01-24 10:28:42 AM  
I agree with the Boobies. If you have a self cleaning electric over use the self clean cycle there. 100% clean with no effort.

I also agree that a smooth surface is best. I hate the new pebbled pans they sell. I was fortunate enough to inherit by mother in law's ancient iron. On those the inside has been machined to a VERY flat and NOTHING sticks to then once seasoned.
 
2021-01-24 10:29:46 AM  

rukie: Well to remove seasoning, just out it in the oven in the self cleaning mode. It'll cook off.

If you want an incredible pan though, sand through the grits to a mirror finish. Then season.

In the old days cast pans didn't come with a very smooth finish, so they'd surface them smooth.

Today, casting a lot better and they don't bother post finishing. So a pan from 1880 might be smoother than a new pan today.

I also like to use beef suet for seasoning.


Agreed with the above.  The sanding isn't to remove the seasoning, it's to do a proper finishing of the cast iron itself.  Get it to a mirror finish with the sander and reseason and it'll be as good or better than a teflon pan.

Think of it like resurfacing a brake disk.  You can scrub it with cleaner all you want, but unless you grind it down to a better finish, it's not going to be where you want it.
 
2021-01-24 10:34:55 AM  

rukie: Well to remove seasoning, just out it in the oven in the self cleaning mode.



Isn't this what Hitler did with the gay Jews?

//aisle seat
 
2021-01-24 10:35:12 AM  

Gubbo: Marcus Aurelius: 1. Turn gas grill onto HIGH.
2. Throw in the cast iron.
3. Drink 2 beers.
4. Turn off gas grill.

My method is clearly superior.

Would 3 beers also work, just for safety and to allow for different drinking speeds?


For safety sake.
 
2021-01-24 10:49:51 AM  

oldernell: Lodge now pre seasons their pans.  I don't know why you would want to remove it.  I've got pans that are over 70 years old and have never been unseasoned.


Unfortunately their pans are not very smooth, though.  The point is to sand them smooth, then re-season. It doesn't take much work to do this, but it makes lightyears of difference to the cooking surface.
 
2021-01-24 11:06:43 AM  
The only cleaning mine get is the occasional boiling water to get some persistent bits off with just lightly scraping it with a fork. The only time we actually reseasoned a pan was when we had some idiot (FIL!) wash it with dishsoap. We didn't want to refinish it because it was super smooth. Just a mild abrasive sponge and lots of steam.
 
2021-01-24 11:08:56 AM  

SpectroBoy: I agree with the Boobies.


Don't we all?
 
2021-01-24 11:16:23 AM  

arrogantbastich: The only cleaning mine get is the occasional boiling water to get some persistent bits off with just lightly scraping it with a fork. The only time we actually reseasoned a pan was when we had some idiot (FIL!) wash it with dishsoap. We didn't want to refinish it because it was super smooth. Just a mild abrasive sponge and lots of steam.


Dish soap can't hurt the seasoning. People think this because the seasoning is made from oil or fat, which can be dissolved in detergent, but the high heat has broken down the fat and reformed it into a polymer that is essentially a kind of plastic that can't be dissolved in soapy water. The real enemy is mechanical abrasion. Soap or no soap, scrubbing too hard will wear through the polymer.
 
2021-01-24 11:24:49 AM  
Save the easy off for your steel sheet pans.
 
2021-01-24 11:25:38 AM  
I never sand mice, it pisses them off.
 
2021-01-24 11:27:24 AM  

Ambivalence: Save the easy off for your steel sheet pans.


And NOT the aluminum pans.
 
2021-01-24 11:41:32 AM  
As an old southern woman, I'm shocked, shocked I tell you that anyone would even consider doing this to a seasoned pan. It's heresy, pure and simple.
 
2021-01-24 11:59:44 AM  
Don't buy Lodge cast iron. It's crap.

Browse some antique stores or go to EBay/Etsy and find some pre-1940s cast iron. Griswold and Wagner are both great; older pans have a ring and number. They are lighter weight for everyday use (go figure), and the surfaces are so smooth that bad seasoning can be gently scrubbed off with steel wool and re-done. I've rehabbed three now, and I don't use anything else.

Even if the surfaces are pitted and imperfect, they hold seasoning beautifully. You can see your reflection.
 
2021-01-24 12:32:38 PM  
People over think cast iron plans. Sure, make sure to prepare and season it when you get it. Use it.  Love it. Heat it on a stove with a wipe of oil after you've washed it. Put it away when it's cool.
 
2021-01-24 12:35:21 PM  

Gubbo: Marcus Aurelius: 1. Turn gas grill onto HIGH.
2. Throw in the cast iron.
3. Drink 2 beers.
4. Turn off gas grill.

My method is clearly superior.

Would 3 beers also work, just for safety and to allow for different drinking speeds?



But is five minutes really long enough?
 
2021-01-24 12:40:47 PM  
And I thought stapling the antlers on the mice was bad.
 
2021-01-24 12:43:32 PM  
Fark user imageView Full Size


I don't know what mouse sanders are, and a Google search on the subject is only confusing me more.
 
2021-01-24 1:24:58 PM  

gopher321: Amazon had a sale on a cheap mouse sander for $30, so I thought Why not? I don't know if this Easy Off in a garbage bag is an easier/better method though.

He also had a tip on avoiding rust on your pan once it's stripped too.


I do a fair bit of woodworking, and I use my Mouse sander all the time. It's great for getting into corners.
 
2021-01-24 1:35:46 PM  

darkhorse23: As an old southern woman, I'm shocked, shocked I tell you that anyone would even consider doing this to a seasoned pan. It's heresy, pure and simple.


I think in this subby's case it's to deal with a very rusted pan. I've had some barn 'rescue' pans that needed big help....fortunately at the time I had access to a sandblaster.
 
2021-01-24 2:17:00 PM  

optikeye: I think in this subby's case it's to deal with a very rusted pan


Citric acid, one tablespoon per liter. Water as hot as you can stand. Wash the rusty thing with wrm soapy water, scrub off any loose rust, then soak in the rusty thing in the acid solution for a couple hours, swirling a few times. Rust is gone. Doesn't damage the iron or weaken it. It's also completely non-toxic.

Old trick for restoring rusted handplanes and chisels.
 
2021-01-24 2:25:41 PM  

Threp: optikeye: I think in this subby's case it's to deal with a very rusted pan

Citric acid, one tablespoon per liter. Water as hot as you can stand. Wash the rusty thing with wrm soapy water, scrub off any loose rust, then soak in the rusty thing in the acid solution for a couple hours, swirling a few times. Rust is gone. Doesn't damage the iron or weaken it. It's also completely non-toxic.

Old trick for restoring rusted handplanes and chisels.


I keep a bag of that in the kitchen. I use it to descum the dishwasher, it'll dissolve soap build up so you won't get as much spots on glasses. Run it through empty tho can be hash on some items.
Also, a tsp of Citric acid, 2 tsp of baking soda and a BC powder is Alka Seltzer with Caffeine.
 
2021-01-24 2:30:54 PM  

riffraff: Why are you removing it? If you need to, the self-cleaning mode as said above is a very easy way to do it.
Re-season with flax-seed oil in the oven at 400.


Flax seed can lead to layers of seasoning that flake off. I know this from experience, as I seasoned all of my pans with flax seed oil after likely reading about it from the same source you did. Some of them stayed fine. Others flaked a little. And one flaked a lot. Better to go with canola or other neutral oil.
 
2021-01-24 2:33:56 PM  
as 

Bajtaur noted... easy off is some very, very, very nasty stuff. I only ever use it on the stovetop gratings... outside. with a hose before they come back inside. also the grass dies for half a year. that stuff is skeery.

gopher321: Amazon had a sale on a cheap mouse sander for $30, so I thought Why not? I don't know if this Easy Off in a garbage bag is an easier/better method though.


I had to scrooble what a mouse sander even is!!!

eh, for 30 bucks I'd just get a cheap sonic screwdriver what can do not only that same thing, but like seventeen other things as well - https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product​/B0​03H054RY/

Fark user imageView Full Size



/trust me, you will suddenly find yourself sawing thru' things you somehow never realized needed sawin'-thru'
//this one only has 2 modes: 'off' (aka 'lurking...') - and - 'SONIC!!!'
///eh, suffices
 
2021-01-24 2:35:14 PM  

oldernell: Lodge now pre seasons their pans.  I don't know why you would want to remove it.  I've got pans that are over 70 years old and have never been unseasoned.


Sometimes something will happen to the seasoning in a spot or the pan will rust. In such cases people might want to take all the seasoning off and start over so that they can apply it evenly over the whole pan.

/ And, of course, there's the sanding the base metal to make it smooth thing that others are talking about. I've never done that because I don't have a sander or angle grinder. I have heard some dissenting voices that say the pebbled surface is better, but this is something I've wanted to try.
 
2021-01-24 2:35:19 PM  

Squid_for_Brains: Don't buy Lodge cast iron. It's crap.

Browse some antique stores or go to EBay/Etsy and find some pre-1940s cast iron. Griswold and Wagner are both great; older pans have a ring and number. They are lighter weight for everyday use (go figure), and the surfaces are so smooth that bad seasoning can be gently scrubbed off with steel wool and re-done. I've rehabbed three now, and I don't use anything else.

Even if the surfaces are pitted and imperfect, they hold seasoning beautifully. You can see your reflection.


100% agreed. I have a sweet collection of OLD cast iron. Griswolds are my personal favorite. They are very very smooth.
Word of warning, do NOT drop a hot cast Iron pan. My ex wife dropped my 14 1/2" Griswold...it shattered. It took me 10 years but i finally found a replacement. It was an old "barn find" for $2. Took a lot of elbow grease but it is now fully restored.
 
2021-01-24 2:36:31 PM  
as always, non-preview comes back to bite me in the asp!

/*shakes tiny fist... at self*
 
2021-01-24 2:38:18 PM  

SpectroBoy: I agree with the Boobies. If you have a self cleaning electric over use the self clean cycle there. 100% clean with no effort.

I also agree that a smooth surface is best. I hate the new pebbled pans they sell. I was fortunate enough to inherit by mother in law's ancient iron. On those the inside has been machined to a VERY flat and NOTHING sticks to then once seasoned.


I have my late FIL's chicken frying skillet that he inherited from his mother.  Slick as snot on a frozen doorknob.

If my house caught fire, I would grab it.
 
2021-01-24 2:39:37 PM  
Enameled cast iron ftw

/anosmia
 
2021-01-24 2:41:14 PM  
Fark user imageView Full Size

A cup wire brush like this one will cost you 5$ and will remove rust and seasoning from cast iron w/o removing any metal. It won't smooth out surfaces like sandpaper, but will last indefinitely. Chuck one into an angle grinder or high speed drill. If you are going to get into collecting rusty flea market cast iron, beg, borrow or steal a drill press to chuck it into, so you can hold the rusty pan with both hands.
 
2021-01-24 2:42:47 PM  

rosekolodny: SpectroBoy: I agree with the Boobies. If you have a self cleaning electric over use the self clean cycle there. 100% clean with no effort.

I also agree that a smooth surface is best. I hate the new pebbled pans they sell. I was fortunate enough to inherit by mother in law's ancient iron. On those the inside has been machined to a VERY flat and NOTHING sticks to then once seasoned.

I have my late FIL's chicken frying skillet that he inherited from his mother.  Slick as snot on a frozen doorknob.

If my house caught fire, I would grab it.


I'm pretty sure it would survive the blaze. Better to focus on saving the beer.
 
2021-01-24 2:43:11 PM  

phlegmjay: riffraff: Why are you removing it? If you need to, the self-cleaning mode as said above is a very easy way to do it.
Re-season with flax-seed oil in the oven at 400.

Flax seed can lead to layers of seasoning that flake off. I know this from experience, as I seasoned all of my pans with flax seed oil after likely reading about it from the same source you did. Some of them stayed fine. Others flaked a little. And one flaked a lot. Better to go with canola or other neutral oil.


huh, tyty for that tidbit! I never buy the stuff 'cos it's always so dingdanged espensivo, but I've wanted to.

generally I just use grapeseed oil when I can find that stuff on sale.

the flaxseed itself (whole or powder, dealer's choice) is useful, though, to keep around as an emergency egg-substitute in a pinch. not because I am a vegulon (I mean, I am, but... I eat eggs, love eggs...) - but because sometimes you accidentally ran out of eggs (I know, I know, I am a monster. an abomination. pro-tip: never run out of eggs.)
 
2021-01-24 2:47:04 PM  

tintar: phlegmjay: riffraff: Why are you removing it? If you need to, the self-cleaning mode as said above is a very easy way to do it.
Re-season with flax-seed oil in the oven at 400.

Flax seed can lead to layers of seasoning that flake off. I know this from experience, as I seasoned all of my pans with flax seed oil after likely reading about it from the same source you did. Some of them stayed fine. Others flaked a little. And one flaked a lot. Better to go with canola or other neutral oil.

huh, tyty for that tidbit! I never buy the stuff 'cos it's always so dingdanged espensivo, but I've wanted to.

generally I just use grapeseed oil when I can find that stuff on sale.

the flaxseed itself (whole or powder, dealer's choice) is useful, though, to keep around as an emergency egg-substitute in a pinch. not because I am a vegulon (I mean, I am, but... I eat eggs, love eggs...) - but because sometimes you accidentally ran out of eggs (I know, I know, I am a monster. an abomination. pro-tip: never run out of eggs.)


WHAT KIND OF MONSTER RUNS OUT OF EGGS?
 
2021-01-24 2:51:10 PM  

khitsicker: wire wheel on your angle grinder works just as well.


Psychopompous: [Fark user image 850x850]
A cup wire brush like this one will cost you 5$ and will remove rust and seasoning from cast iron w/o removing any metal. It won't smooth out surfaces like sandpaper, but will last indefinitely. Chuck one into an angle grinder or high speed drill. If you are going to get into collecting rusty flea market cast iron, beg, borrow or steal a drill press to chuck it into, so you can hold the rusty pan with both hands.


just... (I know, I know, it's softer therefore less-effective) ...but still, consider the brass brushes not iron or steel.

little tiny shards of that shiat will break off, and if a microscopic piece gets embedded in whatever you're workin' on (pan, car, bicycle, ...) - it WILL later interact with the metal to rust up a farking storm.

/also with brass there's less chance you will fark the thing up, lol
//or yourself either, lol
///also? safety-glasses, kids, safety glasses. This Is The Way.
 
2021-01-24 2:53:08 PM  

phlegmjay: rosekolodny: SpectroBoy: I agree with the Boobies. If you have a self cleaning electric over use the self clean cycle there. 100% clean with no effort.

I also agree that a smooth surface is best. I hate the new pebbled pans they sell. I was fortunate enough to inherit by mother in law's ancient iron. On those the inside has been machined to a VERY flat and NOTHING sticks to then once seasoned.

I have my late FIL's chicken frying skillet that he inherited from his mother.  Slick as snot on a frozen doorknob.

If my house caught fire, I would grab it.

I'm pretty sure it would survive the blaze. Better to focus on saving the beer.


If you go that route, just make sure NOT to call the Fire Department, the water from the firehoses will crack the hot cast iron.
 
2021-01-24 2:54:22 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: 1. Turn gas grill onto HIGH.
2. Throw in the cast iron.
3. Drink 2 beers.

2.  JUST COOK YOUR GODDAMN FOOD ON THE GODDAMN GRILL
4. Turn off gas grill.

My method is clearly superior.


FTFY.  How do you get a great crust on a steak?  Option 1:  get a really hot fire going and put a crust on the steak.  Option 2:  "Oh you need cast iron from the 40s you need to go to swap meets like this amazing one I found by the river and oh it has to be mirror smooth here's how I prepare it and then continually maintain it I do what this guy does in the YouTube video but his temperatures are all wrong and my method only takes three days...."
 
2021-01-24 2:58:54 PM  

rosekolodny: WHAT KIND OF MONSTER RUNS OUT OF EGGS?


lol, I should really feel even more ashamed of myself than usual!!!

but not today! there are 2 dozen in the bottom drawer en-frigo, and yet another carton with mebbe 3 or 4 left, on one of the shelves in there.

huh, I should really make a ginormous batch of spa-eggs. although I usually/always do those in the convection toaster, and the most I can fit on the top rack without crowding is maybe 8 at most. (bottom rack reserved for the water-bath when slow-cooking eggs...)
 
2021-01-24 3:03:03 PM  

grokca: I never sand mice, it pisses them off.


Try the oven cleaner. Also pissed off mice are not really a problem.
 
2021-01-24 3:08:39 PM  

Mambo Bananapatch: grokca: I never sand mice, it pisses them off.

Try the oven cleaner. Also pissed off mice are not really a problem.


You sound like someone who's never been bit by a mouse.  They give it their all.
 
2021-01-24 3:10:26 PM  

revrendjim: arrogantbastich: The only cleaning mine get is the occasional boiling water to get some persistent bits off with just lightly scraping it with a fork. The only time we actually reseasoned a pan was when we had some idiot (FIL!) wash it with dishsoap. We didn't want to refinish it because it was super smooth. Just a mild abrasive sponge and lots of steam.

Dish soap can't hurt the seasoning. People think this because the seasoning is made from oil or fat, which can be dissolved in detergent, but the high heat has broken down the fat and reformed it into a polymer that is essentially a kind of plastic that can't be dissolved in soapy water. The real enemy is mechanical abrasion. Soap or no soap, scrubbing too hard will wear through the polymer.


Yes. Dish soap is fine. The soap that causes the problem is lye soap. THAT will eat through it.

Conveniently, that either the same stuff as easy-off or very close to it. And it DOES work great to clean off pans you get that are thoroughly wrecked. I will use the easy-off - I'd prefer straight lye, but it's hard to find - to get it mostly clean, then scrub and sand. A mild bath in peroxide and acid, and it's ready to go. The flax oil works fine, and since I have some I use it. I suspect any oil of high enough heat would work as well, as long as you do it in small layers. The next pan I want to do I want to do with the electrolysis stripping, because a) chemistry is fun and b) REALLY clean pans.

What I would like to find is any research and papers on the subject. I couldn't find any. I would like to know more about the metal states under a well seasoned pan to know if it's worth trying to blue. I know it works well on guns, but the methods I have seen for guns are not something I'd feel comfortable doing with a pan. I'm not worried about easy-off on a pan to start off with, but I sure am with some of the bluing chemicals.
 
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