Milling is the process of using a rotary machine cutting head to actually cut and remove metal shavings from a metal part. Milling is analogous to a lathe or planer in woodworking. This is a far more aggressive process than polishing, which can be done with hand held tools. Much like sanding wood. Cast ware that is milled, typically is cast 50-70% heavier than the final piece. This utilizes 50 -70% more energy as well as iron ore. I have visited with one foundry that casts a 7.5 pound raw casting which the manufacturing customer then mills down to 4 lbs. He must cast this heavy, because an initial lighter casting would not provide enough “bite” for the cutting head and the tool would chatter, leaving unacceptable chatter marks on the milled surface. This manufacture accepts 3.5 lbs. of waste as part of manufacturing every skillet. For a 1,350 skillet manufacturing run, that is over 4700 pounds of wasted metal. ….. and the energy required to heat it to a pourable state…..and energy (and time) to cut it down on the milling machine. The waste shavings only have marginal recycling value due to their size. Much is cooked off, via oxidation. (Large pieces of scrap are much better candidates for recycling.) The waste from that machining run, all 4,700 lbs. would have a market value of less than $100. Does a 1,350 piece run of skillets seem like an odd number to order? After scrapping 35% of the pieces that didn’t survive the milling process or otherwise make the cut, they are left with 1000 sellable units. The milling rate and scrap rate can account for over half of the iron and energy used in production.
We have sought out a US jobber foundry that uses casting materials and methods that meet our specification for smoothness and initial dimensional accuracy. Smoothness is part of the initial process, not a second step. Typical scrap rates of raw castings is around 5%. With a simple, well thought out pattern, that rate is often 3%. It has been very important for us to choose both the right casting process and the right foundry. This results in a Premium product, requiring half the energy input, and at significant savings to other premium products. It is a great example of using appropriate technology for the task.
Our leather handle cover is produced in house and is a great helper when using your waffle iron or pulling your Jeweled Skillet from the oven. We produce these in house and are sure you will love them. (Yes, you can use them on other brands of cookware, too. We won't tell.) The design is a fold over seam design and is very ergonomic. There is stitching down one side and the bottom. The other side remains open so that the piece is semi-open and easier to use. We use the thickest leather we could source and still execute the fold. Product testers have been amazed at its resistance to heat. The 4.5 inch version works great with the waffle maker. It is useful with the skillet as well. The 5.5 inch handle cover is recommended if you have only purchased the skillet, it provides a fuller grip.
Our paring knife is made by Dexter Russel, one of the last main line producers of cutlery in the USA. Tony personally has a couple of their large cleavers for BBQ duty, and several spatulas, but the paring knife gets used multiple time a day.
At an introductory price of $95, the #10 Jeweled Skillet is designed for the cook that wants a superior “as cast” finish that seasons quickly, is more naturally non-stick, and captures the eye when presenting at the table. With an exceptionally smooth as cast surface, reminiscent of vintage pieces, our skillet does not need milling to give you an exceptionally smooth cooking surface. Tooling is complete and we are awaiting our production slot at the foundry. 5 Lbs. 1 oz. 10" across the top, 7.75" cook surface. A shade under 17" from handle end to handle end. Carat weight of 8646 with an estimated 2520 facets.
The Great American Waffle Iron is made for the patriot, the family that enjoys quality food, the cook, the baker, the traditionalist, the historian, the story teller. as of 9/26 they are in the production cycle at the foundry. We expect these in the next week or so. They will need a couple of weeks at our shop to be seasoned then shipped.