[Sca-cooks] Another cast iron question

ranvaig at columbus.rr.com ranvaig at columbus.rr.com
Sat Aug 30 21:44:17 PDT 2008

>So, still playing devil's advocate and asking questions, why would cast iron stove paint not be appropriate? It seems to me the usage of a cast iron hibachi is closer to a cast iron woodburning stove than a pan that you use every day. Perhaps some of our gentles on this list who live in places where there is actual winter could address this? The only place I have ever seen a woodburning stove is in a house museum.

Is the rust really that bad?  We had a cast iron hibachi that lived on our picnic table year round, out in the rain and snow.  Without any treatment at all, it had a bit of rust but not anything to worry about.  The fire tends to burn off the rust.  Make sure it has drainage, so water can't collect on the inside. 

I wasn't trying to pack it in the car though.  Because you will be handling it, taking it back and forth to events I might clean and treat the outside.  If you rub a very thin layer of oil just before you lit the fire and cook as normally, it should get plenty hot to season it.  Done right the oil is polymerized and wont spoil.  The fire will burn off any seasoning on the inside, so I wouldn't bother. 

At least one brand of stove paint says it is suitable for hibachis and withstands heat up to 1200 F.  It also says not for surfaces in contact with food or direct contact with fire, so sounds like the outside only. Check with the manufacturer.  (I've never used it, just found it with Google).

Be aware of the difference between stove black and stove paint.  Stove black (or blackening) is an old fashioned way to make a stove look good, but needs maintenance, is not water proof, and will rub off on your hands.

And here are some articles about using the battery charger to remove rust.  The negative lead goes to the item you are cleaning.   Do it in a well ventilated area.


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