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Nov 7, 2011 12:07 PM

Stamped copper pots Vs spun copper pots

I have not been able to find any information on the differences between stamped vs spun copper pots. I have found a company,Lara Copper, that is considerably less expensive and they spin the pots to form them then tin coat the insides. The thickness of the copper is 2mm . Does anyone know if their is any quality differences between spun and stamped as most other copper pot companies use?

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  1. Hi, flatscat:

    I have not handled or used Lara copperware, so I can't comment on that maker specifically.

    However, I would urge you not to assume that other makers aren't also "spinning" their pans into shape. My understanding is that virtually all modern makers form their copper pots by turning them using heavy lathes and chucks; the hammering that you see on some is almost always put on after the pan is formed. I think only a few simple designs would be amenable to stamping in any event. Perhaps this is why you have not found much information--it may be a distiction without a difference.

    Some turned pans may appear more "spun" because of tool marks left on the surface.

    2mm is a good starting thickness, and a serviceable minimum. 2.5mm is markedly better. IMO 3mm is better still, but getting rare--I know of no modern producer in quantity that offers entire lines at 3mm or >.

    Assuming there *is* a stamped/spun distinction, I doubt there is a performance difference per se. The hammered exteriors you now see on some pans and pots *does* serve a functional purpose (work hardening), but I am not sure merely stamping a pan accomplishes the same result as planishing.

    Hope this helps.



    24 Replies
    1. re: kaleokahu

      Thanks for the reply Kaleo. I was just going by a youtube video on Falk cookware and they stamped theirs on a press. I assumed most of the other makers did the same because I had not seen mention of spinning before.

      1. re: flatscat

        Hi, flatscat:

        Thanks, I learned something.

        You should check out for how an American company has put old American machine tools back into service for making 1st-grade copperware. Not cheap, but probably better than Falk. Just not SS-lined.

        I will check out Lara.


          1. re: kaleokahu

   is not an operating website, and when I google it, I get as the first hit. Is this what you were referring to? Near as I can tell, their pots are 2.35mm thick and then lined with tin. Falk are 2.3mm copper and .2 stainless. .05mm isn't a substantial difference in the total thickness of copper and the stainless v. tin issue has been beat to death, and each has its pros and cons. I too am interested to know how these might be better than Falk?

            If thickness is what you are after, how about these:

            1. re: jljohn

              Hi, jljohn:

              Yes, you found the right place. They have gone by, and Hammersmith. They're the same folks, Mac and Jeff.

              How better than Falk? First, I consider tinned better. Second, I like their handles better. Third, the pans are all tested to be properly work-hardened. I gather stamping is not a dependable way of hardening; turning pans on a lathe actually work hardens the material. These guys have one worker whose skill and job it is to make each pan "ring" (as in a bell) to assure every one is perfectly hardened. My guess is that Falk and Mauviel feel this step isn't necessary (or even possible) given the bimetal construction--maybe they rely on the harder SS lining to impart some hardness. But since it's only 0.2mm thick, I'm not thinking that's going to help much.

              I have the RMR set you link to. It's a really good set, and the price is very low. My set mikes out at 2.8mm, not 3mm, but I have nothing but good to say about them. My only wish is that the 4 pans included one larger pan and dropped the very small one.

              Even if you opine that Brooklyn and Falk are equal, why not buy American? Their free (1st) retinning is a great feature, and helps some get past the fear of tin's delicacy--I've boiled one of my RMR pans dry now THREE times with no permanent damage.


              1. re: kaleokahu

                You don't think the 850 tons per square centimeter Falk uses in it's production process hardens the copper?


                The set of four pans is good value. Otherwise, their saute pans and stewpans are more expensive than Falk.

                All Falk pans have a rolled lip. None of Brooklyn's pans do.

                1. re: NotJuliaChild

                  Hi, NJC:

                  Is the 850T of which you speak used in the *bonding* process or the *forming* process?

                  In either case, it's plastic deformation that accomplishes the work hardening. I'm no expert in this physical process, but turning the "penny" (the deadsoft or quarter-soft disk) on a lathe and against a chuck imparts different and very focused stresses on the material than does pressing. One is formed at the narrow point of a tool, the other is a button die press. I'm sure the press imparts some hardness, I'm just of the opinion that turning produces a more consistent result within the pan.

                  Yes, Brooklyn's pans cost a little more. Considering the extra labor involved in turning, tinning, and polishing (each of these processes having multiple steps, whereas Falk is stamped and brushed), I think you can see why.

                  Rolled lips... No doubt, this is a nice feature. So are car headlight wipers. The unseen side of rolled lips is that they can be a *substitute* for hardness--bending the metal "back the other way" imparts an overall stiffness to the pan, but it is not necessarily harder. This stiffening effect is why really thin copper pans have rolled lips or rolled-around-wire edges.

                  Falk pans are very good, don't get me wrong. IMO, the Brooklyns are better, and made right here in the USA.

                  What do apostles do in our kitchens? Why, cook of course. If you want a specific example of a dish that is made better and easier with control, last night I cooked trout with haricot verts and croutons in lemon caper butter. The oval copper pan provides even heat along the entire fish, even though the pan's sides hang over the round hob. The recipe calls for browning the fillets in oil, skin-side down, but only until they are cooked 2/3 through. The pan is then removed from the heat while the beans and sauce are made, which entails frothing and slightly browning the flavored butter. It is this hot butter, spoon basted over the fish, that finishes cooking the trout. Perhaps a better cook than I could "Jiffypop" her saute pan, time things perfectly (stop at the 1/4-cooked point?), deftly remove the partially-cooked trout undamaged from a less-conductive pan to stop the saute, and/or control the butter frothing by setting a singular correct heat level based on decades of experience. But I can't (yet, anyway) pull off this dish in clad or cast iron. I'd have a shot with aluminum.

                  Hope this satisfies your craving for "Just once..."


                  1. re: kaleokahu

                    You're of the opinion that turning produces a more consistent result within the pan. If you would be so kind, explain to me how you came to have this opinion.

                    Maybe Brooklyn pans are harder, maybe they aren't. It don't know what the term means as you're using it. But it seems to me you're arguing that one car goes 250 and the other 255, when all you ever do is go 25 mph in between closely spaced stop signs and stop lights.

                    It's irrelevant.

                    If you want to argue that it isn't, quote some authority that explains how it makes a difference in a layperson's kitchen.

                    Suggesting that a rolled lip is a substitute for some perceived manufacturing shortcoming is absurd. It's designed to facilitate pouring.

                    This is another moot point.

                    Copper has it's place in the kitchen. But a pan will never be a substitute for a skilled chef.

                    Hope you enjoyed your fish.

                    1. re: NotJuliaChild

                      Hi, NJC:

                      All righty then... OK... You have a nice day, and believe what you want, OK?


                      1. re: NotJuliaChild

                        The way most copper alloys are hardened is through work hardening which is the process of running the material through rollers to shape it, or some other method that imparts force against the material. There is some work hardening now being done with ultrasonics so as to not affect the original shape of the part. Now all of this is a moot point if the pan is allowed to get over heated , and is suddenly cooled down. If this happens, the pan is now annealed - softened.

                        I work as a tool maker for a screw machine company that literally goes through tons of copper, and other alloys a month. One of my areas to cover is the zone annealer where we use an induction unit to heat only the wire crimped end to make it soft, while leaving the pin / socket end hard. I would agree that spinning would impart more work against the material as opposed to stamping. In spinning, specialized spinning lathes are used to form the material over a pattern. To get the metal to flow it is spun very fast,and a tool is pushed against it to move it. This is done at a concentrated point on the material which imparts a great amount of force to the material. Often times parts have to be pulled, annealed, and formed some more to get the full shape needed. Stamping is done with a die set. The work hardening would come about from the stretching of the material as it is pushed into the die. The amount of stretch is the variable, as different die , pan ,and bowl designs along with press speed will create different amounts of stretch.

                        Shape has a lot to do with stiffness (resistance to bending). Rolled edges, and ribbing are used often in sheet metal to stiffen an edge, surface, or to provide a smooth edge. For pouring , a sharp edge may actually be better, as the surface tension of a liquid can't flow around it as easily as on the rolled edge. There are some rain gutters made with a rolled edge that take advantage of surface tension.

                        The only way to really test this would be to have the pans etc. tested with a Rockwell , or Brinell type hardness tester.

                        Now does it make it cook better? Probably not, but the pan will hold its shape better over the long haul if it is stiffer.

                        1. re: BIGGUNDOCTOR

                          I concur with BigGun's comments.
                          I would also add the following:
                          1.Pure copper is extremely soft and that used for cookware has alloying elements added for stiffness and hardness. So it depends on the specific copper alloy used in a pan.
                          2.Given the fairly low production runs, I doubt it would be economical to tool up for deep drawing many deep pots. Spinning is a quick low cost, except for labor, way of making pots & pans.
                          3. Work hardening, drawing or spinning, can be highly affected by post forming heat treatment.
                          4. Bottom line - get a pan with the thickest wall that does not over load your arm and also comes with a good guarentee - handles do come off,
                          and quit worrying about the inconsequentials. Your soup will be the same!

                          1. re: subal

                            I really appreciate all the replies and I believe youall have answered my question to the nth degree. Thanks for sharing your time and knowledge.

                            1. re: subal

                              Just a note on post process heat treating copper alloys. Most copper alloys will not get harder, but softer with heat treating. We can harden beryllium copper alloys , but everything else is either zone, or batch annealed. Sometimes stress relieved.

                              There are CNC spinning lathes now, so labor costs are not as much as they used to be. The skilled craftsman has been replaced by a silicon chip in a lot of cases.

                            2. re: BIGGUNDOCTOR

                              Hey, BIGGUNDOCTOR:

                              Re: going through a lot of copper... Have you found that finding deadsoft sheetstock is difficult? The reason I ask is that the harder the starting stock,, the more difficult it is to turn the pan, ergo the softer the stock, the thicker pan can be spun (within limits). Specifically, do you know a source for deadsoft sheets in the 10-gauge range?


                              1. re: kaleokahu

                                Hey K,
                                we make items out of bar stock, not sheets. Sheet can be annealed, and that is what the folks on my blacksmithing forum do-anneal before making anything. As for a supplier we got a lot from a Swiss company before they folded, and we also get some now from Copper and Brass Sales.

                                When spinning you can only push the metal so far before you risk cracking, so it is often annealed before the final shape is reached.

                                Pretty basic way to anneal a piece is get it dull red, and quench it in water.

                            3. re: NotJuliaChild

                              " ... a pan will never be a substitute for a skilled chef."

                              I agree, or even for a skilled cook.

                            4. re: kaleokahu

                              Talofa, Tareo!
                              I'm sorry to veer OT here but you seem so knowledgeable about copper that I thought I'd ask. I won a lovely hammered 10" copper bowl on eBay and noticed, in addition to its being stamped "Made in France," that it has a maker's mark as well. Unfortunately, it apparently wasn't stamped very well (the bowl is, for all intents and purposes, unused) and all I can make out is that it seems to start with a cursive M and is in a shield. Any clues? Also, what's better to remove the lacquer, acetone or lacquer thinner (boiling in soda is out of the question)? Thanks! And by the way, I recently ran across Hammersmith in Brooklyn and was likewise very impressed. I hope to a few pieces from them one of these days and directed a colleague to their site the other day.

                              1. re: MacGuffin

                                Talofa, MacG:

                                Post a photo of your mark. Also check the long list of marks at It is pretty common for there to be mis-strikes and over-strikes of the marks.

                                I would just use acetone and a soft-bristled brush (old toothbrush?) to make sure you get into the crenelations. And in this case (bare copper), you might follow that up with Bon Ami or BKF.

                                Yes, Mac and Jeff at Hammersmith are super. Remember that you are NOT limited to what you see on their website. They have all of the old Waldow tooling (Waldow had an EXTREMELY wide product range), so they can make anything that Waldow ever offered. You just have to ask.


                                1. re: kaleokahu

                                  Thank you! I'd already checked OC.O prior to posting; I usually attempt to find things out for myself before asking. I'm using my Mac for the photo; this is the best I can get (sorry!).

                                  1. re: MacGuffin


                                    Not much to go on... Maybe Matfer or Matfer-Bourgeat?

                                    Is this a roaster?


                                    1. re: kaleokahu

                                      Thanks, Taleo. It ISN'T much to go on, is it? :(
                                      It's a bowl for egg whites. :))

                          2. re: kaleokahu

                            Awesome, thanks for the info. I just wish RMR or BrooklynCopperCookware made a Saucier, as that is what I am really after. Do you know of any domestic mfg of a 2.5-3mm copper saucier?

                            1. re: jljohn

                              Hi, again, jljohn:

                              Re saucier... Because Brooklyn is heir to all the Waldow tooling, they can usually do one-offs of anything Waldow offered. This selection is quite wide, and may include sauciers or Windsors. You need to contact Mac to find out what they can do. In the alternative, frenchcopperstudio does one-offs, but bring $$$. Otherwise, do what I do: scrounge for vintage.