March 25, 2021

Fixing my Cast-Iron Pan


Fixing my Cast-Iron Pan
Not so much a hack as a fix.

I recently purchased a new cast-iron frying pan....a big one from Lodge. It's been a while since I have purchased a new cast-iron anything, and I was not aware that Lodge has changed how they made & sold their products.

My norm was to take any new cast-iron home, give it a good cleaning, and then start the seasoning process. These days Lodge has gone ahead and started pre-seasoning their products.

Sounds like a good shortcut, no?

Yeah....not so much. 

The pre-seasoning on their products isn't the best. The coating is a bit uneven and the end results are not better than just doing it yourself. Of course I just seasoned over the top of what was there and that was OK for a good bit, but not all, of my cooking. My attempts at seasoning didn't fill-in the uneven areas, just took that uneven profile and basically raised it.

Thankfully there is a fix, which I found here:

After sanding down to bare-ish metal
Initial Grind

Sanding it down to bare-metalish was easier than expected. I really thought it'd be harder than it was. Cleanup was more difficult, but still nothing to sneeze at. Then I just needed to start re-seasoning. My oil of choice is Grapeseed oil....because it was easiest for me to find at the grocery store.

This is where it started at.

One grapeseed oil seasoning later
One seasoning later...

After one coat....

Two grapeseed oil seasonings later
Two seasonings later...

After a second coat...

Now I did a total of four coats, and while the bronze color did intensify, it wasn't significant enough in the photos I took. To the naked eye, big difference. I'm not sure if it was the lighting in the kitchen or my camera flash, but the subsequent pics weren't worthwhile.

The finish is nice and smooth now. I'm sure the pan needs to be broken-in and used a lot more, but with a smooth bottom it'll get used more often now.

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