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If you want to learn more about vintage cast iron then you've come to the right place, you will also find some tasty recipes to try. You'll find lots of useful information on how to date, and identify antique cast iron. Also the articles cover a lot of interesting historical information about the foundries.
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Did you know that cast iron skillets are so durable that they can last for centuries? Some have even become family heirlooms, being passed down from generation to generation. Given this aspect, finding out the age of a vintage cast iron skillet can be interesting.
Learn about your vintage cast iron cookware.
Given this factor, the following are some things that you should focus on, particularly if you want to determine the age of your cast iron skillet. Poorly kept cast iron skillets can look older than they actually are, whereas well-kept pans can look younger than they are. However, if you want to determine the true age of your pan, you should instead look at the following factors:. Older pans have a smoother and less pebbled surface than newer ones.
Quick guide to buying antique or vintage cast iron cookware.
Newer cast iron skillets contain a thick and pebbled surface; then, it may be newer. It is also more likely to have been manufactured in the U. Additionally, newer pans have thicker walls as compared to older ones. Apart from the texture, the weight of the pans also differs based on their age.
Newer cast iron skillets tend to be heavier.
A comparison of two popular types highlights this factor — users found that a 8 Lodge cast iron skillet from the s — weighed 4. However, many people find this method to be a bit difficult, particularly since you need to have two different pans in order to compare it effectively.
Luckily, this is not the only way that you can figure out how to tell how old a cast iron skillet is. Another effective way to tell the age is to look for markings on the pan. Some cast-iron skillet pans have markings that can easily be searched for online.
Lodge cast iron
In fact, that is how people usually learn about the origins of their pan. Based on the kind of markings the pan has, you can discover just who made the pan, when it was made, and more. Another type of mark that cast iron skillets can have is a gate mark. This is a raised slash or a scar on the bottom of the pan.
How to tell how old is a cast iron skillet?
However, cast iron skillets with gate marks qualify as vintage pans. This casting method was discontinued inmaking cast iron skillets with gate marks rather rare.
While you will know that your pan is very old, it will be harder to determine who manufactured it. In the s, cast iron foundries avoided putting logos or more on their wares. You can have a look at the gate mark on a cast iron skillet here.
Another easy that you can use to determine the age of your pan is the Made in USA mark that you can find on the bottom of the pan. This was used during the s when trade requirements were extremely tight, and manufacturers had to mention the country of origin of all pieces produced. This is an identifier for a large of cast iron skillets produced during the s and afterward. If the pan has a manufacturer logo, you can see it at the bottom of the pan.
The complete buying guide to lodge cast-iron skillets and cookware
Apart from these books, you can also look for the manufacturers online, but these books are the most comprehensive collections to use. When looking for manufacturer logos, you can identify the age of your pan more easily, but care has to be taken. Additionally, even unmarked pans have small manufacturer identifiers that you can use to tell their age. These are some of the earliest pans produced by the Griswold Manufacturing Company.
Earlier versions of their pans did not contain the entire name. If your pan has only the word ERIE on it, it is possible it is from the Griswold Manufacturing Company and was made during the late s or during the early s.
Based on the logos, the following can be found:. This skillet is rare, valuable, and extremely sought after. It is also produced by the Griswold Manufacturing Company. The pan features a de of a spider web with a spider in it and the words ERIE etched into the body of the spider. If it is in excellent condition, it can have a market value of thousands of dollars, and you will find buyers and collectors flocking to take this piece off your hands.
Another type of cast iron skillet pans produced by the Griswold Manufacturing Company is the Iron Mountain skillets. Made in the s, the Iron Mountain skillets have a very distinctive handle, which makes them easy to identity.
They also have a pan on the bottom, a heat ring, and a product 4 digits at the bottom. These pans were also made by the Griswold Manufacturing Company, but they made during and However, the pans made during carry the Griswold name.
They also feature a heat ring, a pan as well as the product consisting of 4 digits that are on the bottom of the pan. If your skillet is unmarked and only has a heat ring with notches in it, then it is a Lodge skillet. These skillets were made by the Lodge Manufacturing Company and are considered genuinely vintage.
They were made as early as the s. If the pan has notches in the heat ring and also features the text Made in USA, it is Lodge skillet that was made in the s.
However, if the unmarked pan has raised letters at the bottom and a handle with a on it, then it was made in the late s to early Made by the Vollrath Manufacturing Company, these skillets can have the company name or be left blank. However, one common identifying factor is the underlined that is printed on the center, the bottom of the pan. In this case, it means that you have a Vollrath pan that was made during the s to the s. They manufactured pans from till Based on this, many of their pans are unmarked. BSR pans have a ridge under the handle and a as well.
Based on these, you can identify the BSR skillets into the following sub:. This was manufactured during the s and the s. These skillets usually have a letter at the bottom of the pan.
10 tips to identify an unmarked antique cast iron skillet
These were made during the s and are easier to find than the Red Mountain variation. They also have smaller spouts for pouring as compared to other skillets. These are some of the most common ways that you can learn how to tell how old a cast iron skillet is. For many, this can be a great way to find out how old their favorite cast iron pan is. Table of Contents.