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  1. #1
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    Default Another cast iron repair question

    I've done some cast iron repair, usually successfully using silver braze. Now I've got a potential repair with a wrinkle.

    An enameled cast iron fry pan dropped and broke the handle off. If it weren't for the porcelain enamel coating I'd consider it straightforward. In this case I'm not sure what to expect from the coating. Will it contaminate the joint in spite of flux? Will it melt at braze temperature? If it just looks a little ugly I don't mind since this is a utilitarian piece, not a museum restoration.

    Anyone have actual experience brazing enamel ware?

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    The enamel is a glass,and wont melt suddenly but go soft and sticky .I would expect any borax flux used would fuse into the enamel ,as the borax melts to a glassy deposit too.....Anyway ,the enamel certainly wont interfere with silver braze,but any rust or grease will.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TGTool View Post
    I've done some cast iron repair, usually successfully using silver braze. Now I've got a potential repair with a wrinkle.

    An enameled cast iron fry pan dropped and broke the handle off. If it weren't for the porcelain enamel coating I'd consider it straightforward. In this case I'm not sure what to expect from the coating. Will it contaminate the joint in spite of flux? Will it melt at braze temperature? If it just looks a little ugly I don't mind since this is a utilitarian piece, not a museum restoration.

    Anyone have actual experience brazing enamel ware?
    Speaking more as a dedicated cook than a metal-urgitist?

    Good ones were never exacty "cheap" this one is still functional at its "Day Job", so given how long they last?

    I'd simply de-burr the break, downgrade that particular item to oven casserole duty, and order-up its replacement (Creuset-Loire?) for stove-top work.

    It's a commodity item, volume produced, they get bustid now and then, all over the world, after all.

    And the only way you can ever TRUST a handle repair, hot and heavy use, food handling, banging about, etc....is to rivet bolsters, BOTH top and bottom - to span the break.

    And now it is too hard to keep CLEAN not just butt-ugly.

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    + 1 on what Thermite said, ……..and I think it's safe to say you don't want to know what vitreous enamel can do to welding and cutting nozzles

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    If you're really attached to it,perhaps you could sand blast or needle gun the glaze off each side of the break,then it should braze up ok.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TedinNorfolk View Post
    If you're really attached to it,perhaps you could sand blast or needle gun the glaze off each side of the break,then it should braze up ok.
    ...then hang the Mike Foxtrot over the mantle as a curio yah can no longer trust as COOKWARE?

    I could perhaps see that, if you made it from scratch as a one-off. Or your Grand-Daddy had done.

    Mass-produced goods? I still have my Griswolds.. cometh the revolution, and I have to cook rough in the North Woods over a dried moose-turd-pie fire.

    The Crueset-Loire went away with the Magnalium, Aluminium, various teflon, ceramics, "copper", "Blue", "diamond hard" included the wife is always experimenting with.

    Swiss "Spring" laminated stainless, or Copper-disk bottomed Belgian Demeyere and Sputniks do the work, lo these many years, Hong Kong (gas) AND Virginia (electric AND gas).

    GOOD stainless IS "non-stick" if you but know how to COOK with it!

    Defy yah to break a handle, even on the cheap and cheerful "Oxo" or "Emeril" brands.


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    I'd say you could trust it if you test it first. Run it up to 600+° after you braze it and then beat it around a good bit against some wood blocks and see if it holds. I might try a weld instead, with nickel rod. Preheat to 500 in an oven, weld it then peen it with a chipping hammer and post heat, then very slow cool rate. I welded a fit on a cast iron hub for a dump truck not too long ago, used campfire embers for the slow cool. Worked a treat, machined well afterward. Wouldn't have bothered but the guy had the truck sitting for two years trying to find replacement parts.


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