Author Topic: Welding a cast iron skillet  (Read 2747 times)

jickf

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Welding a cast iron skillet
« on: August 08, 2005, 11:05:39 PM »
I recently bought a #20 Griswold (large logo, block letters) that had been previously welded on (brazed).  My intention was to use it on camping trips.  It cracked again, along the original weld, the third time I used it.  It is now cracked down the side and at least 1/2 of the way across the diameter.  I was deep frying the first two times (no problems) and frying bacon the time it cracked.  All three times were over a propane fire.  Please offer any advice on proper welding techniques to repair it so it doesn't crack again during use.  Thanks for your help.

Steve_Stephens

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2005, 11:33:24 PM »
While not impossible to make a weld that will hold up on cast iron it's my belief that it is very difficult and special proceedures have to be used to keep stresses from building up in the welded iron.  There are special welding rods used for iron.  I will defer to other users who may have had experience in welding cast iron.  The antique stove restorers have luck with welding iron.  This has been discussed numerous times on this forum so you might try searching for those threads or wait until a real expert comes along with an answer.  Sorry about the breakage of that big pan.  I'm pretty sure it can be fixed but at what cost and bother?

Steve

Offline Ed Allspaugh

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2005, 11:53:46 PM »
This method works well . Now if you can find someone with enough experience with this method you're in business. This is the best repairs I've seen on cast iron by far.
  

http://www.canadian-antique-stoves.com/welding.htm
Gray Iron-- Old as antiquity, new as tomorrow.

Offline C. Perry Rapier

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2005, 07:36:39 AM »
Ed, I called that ole boy and talked to him at length about all that. He's interesting and ain't afraid to talk.

Offline Ed Allspaugh

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2005, 08:52:01 AM »
Perry, has he ever repaired cracked skillets? Let me put that another way. Did he seem to be interested in trying to repair a skillet? You would probably end up with more in the repair than the skillet is worth.
Gray Iron-- Old as antiquity, new as tomorrow.

Offline C. Perry Rapier

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2005, 09:01:13 AM »
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Perry, has he ever repaired cracked skillets? Let me put that another way. Did he seem to be interested in trying to repair a skillet? You would probably end up with more in the repair than the skillet is worth.

Ed, we talked at length and I told him about a lid that I have that has two cracks in it. He said he would charge me about 100.00 (American) to do the welding, that is plus the shipping both ways. He said he could and would do it, but he said it would be noticeable, so for a user it will work fine, but for a display piece, I don't know. I hate to put a lot of (more) money into a piece just to be left to use it for a plain old lid, so I'm betwixt and between. I have a guy here in town who says he can do the same thing. I'm half a mind to take it to him and let him tell me what he can do with it.

Offline Ed Allspaugh

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2005, 10:19:35 AM »
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I have a guy here in town who says he can do the same thing. I'm half a mind to take it to him and let him tell me what he can do with it.
 
 That sounds like a better route. See how his process for repair differs from the other. How often does he repair cast iron? I've done a few exhaust and intake manifolds for farmers that would bring them to the vocational school many moons ago. Pre-heat the piece and use nickel rod, of course it didn't have to look like much but I did a fine job on them never had any returns.
  I know a guy/friend (we had a falling out a few years back) that has a weld shop. Guess I should stop by to see if it's all water under the bridge now. Then I would gain full access to his shop and be able to give some repair work a try.
Gray Iron-- Old as antiquity, new as tomorrow.

Offline C. Perry Rapier

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2005, 10:51:52 AM »
Ed, while nickel rod may be good to use as far as strength and durability is concerned, the big problem with it is that you can see the nickel in the cast iron and the weld is very obvious. Before I would let anybody try it I believe I would want them to use a rod, if thats possible, that blends in and becomes a part of the cast iron so that it will work and wear and take on the same patina as cast iron. Maybe I'm asking for too much.

Offline Ed Allspaugh

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2005, 11:28:04 AM »
I'm sure they have other rods now a days Perry.  The tech books I have are older.  But look at how dark Gary Taylor got that plated lid. It would take a lot of work to try and make the repair disappear completely.
Gray Iron-- Old as antiquity, new as tomorrow.

Wulfdog

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2005, 01:23:32 PM »
Finally got back on.  I've heard, but haven't tried yet to use ferroweld welding rods made by lincoln.  They're supposed to mimic actual castiron better.
John

Fusion_power

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Re: Welding a cast iron skillet
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2005, 02:08:10 PM »
I wouldn't use ferroweld, everything I've read says its unmachinable.  They make a couple of softweld rods that would do better.  Preparing the piece for welding is the most important part of the job.  This includes carefully grinding a groove that will be filled back in with weld material, drilling a small hole to stop the crack from further expansion, pre-heating to the black hot stage, then laying short beads to fill in the groove.  Finally, cooling the piece down must be done slowly, as in over 8 to 10 hours.

Fusion