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Surface Scratches Mauviel Copper Pan

mundty Mar 1, 2013 05:47 PM

Today I was scrubbing with a very soft rubber bristle brush and Bar Keeper's Friend and somehow managed to scratch up the lid of my Sauce Pan. I typically only use the soft side of a sponge, but didn't imagine rubber bristles would do any damage. They look like very light surfaces scratches, but since the finish of these pots are glossy it sticks out like a sore thumb. What sort of polish can I use to fix this ghastly mistake, will Copperbrill polish away minor scratches or do I need something else?

I'm content with scratches here and there, I know it's going to happen. But this one has really bummed me out. Looking for a polish solution to fix this, please help!

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  1. kaleokahu RE: mundty Mar 1, 2013 06:49 PM

    Hi, mundty:

    Not to worry. That's what BKF does, especially if you scrub with it. It wasn't the bristles, it was the feldspar in the BKF.

    If you don't have a bench buffer, I suggest either Flitz or Simichrome polish. There is also another highly-rated polish I haven't tried yet: http://www.englishcustompolishing.com... If you try it, please post a review.

    If you still see the scratches after that, I would work the scratched area over with 0000 steel wool (finish in one direction--I suggest parallel with the pan's bottom) and *then* repeat the polish.


    1. u
      unprofessional_chef RE: mundty Mar 1, 2013 10:34 PM

      "They look like very light surfaces scratches, but since the finish of these pots are glossy it sticks out like a sore thumb."

      I would just leave it alone and consider it a learning experience. BKF has abrasives that can scratch mirror finishes like the top of metal lids.

      I don't have any experience polishing metal. But my understanding is using anything to polish out the scratches in metal will just make it worse.

      1. m
        mundty RE: mundty Mar 2, 2013 03:56 AM

        The thing is I use BKF all the time, but normally with the soft side of a wet sponge and have never experienced anything like this until I used the brush.

        1. l
          laraffinee RE: mundty Mar 2, 2013 06:57 AM

          A bench buffer is really the best way. Since most people don't have one at home, you may have luck going to your local jeweler and asking if they can buff it for you. They should have the proper wheels and paste to buff it up beautifully.

          3 Replies
          1. re: laraffinee
            mundty RE: laraffinee Mar 2, 2013 07:06 AM

            We have plenty of bench grinders at work... I assume with the right attachment I could fix it up? Any suggestions on what sort of Pad I should use? Do I need to use one of the polishes mentioned above... or would the pad probably suffice?

            1. re: mundty
              kaleokahu RE: mundty Mar 2, 2013 08:24 AM

              Hi, mundty:

              Great if you have a buffer. With the usual BKF scratching, I would use a loose muslin (*not* sisal) wheel, turning at 1700 rpm, with a coloring rouge--Jeweler's Pink is good. If just coloring doesn't do it, step up to a light cutting rouge like chrome white, and then polish out with the coloring (only one grade of rouge on a wheel!).

              Unless you have a really long arbor shaft, you need to be careful about the pan catching on the wheel and dinging it/you up.

              IME, polishing by hand using Flitz and Simichrome does a pretty good job of at least evening out this type of scratches. A pro metal finisher could still probably see them up close, but you may not.

              In fact a lot of people always use BKF (It does a great job of *cleaning* and tarnish removal), and then polish--that way your degree of polish is uniform, if not perfectly mirror. I just find BKF to be too abrasive--can't brook the thought of thinning the copper every time I clean it.


              1. re: kaleokahu
                laraffinee RE: kaleokahu Mar 2, 2013 08:49 AM

                Totally agree with Kaleo about the muslin wheel and the rouge.

          2. Chemicalkinetics RE: mundty Mar 2, 2013 11:09 AM

            Right now you have the new car syndrome. The smallest scratch will look painfully annoying to you. In time, this will pass and you will get used to scratches on your car or your cookware. It is probably better bite the bullet and not "fix" the scratches. Good luck.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Chemicalkinetics
              mundty RE: Chemicalkinetics Mar 2, 2013 11:58 AM

              We're not talking about a small scratch here and there, I have those and I'm fine with them. These are swirl marks... trust me I screw up.

              1. re: mundty
                kaleokahu RE: mundty Mar 2, 2013 02:29 PM

                Hi, mundty:

                And as with a brand-new car, your enjoyment of your band-new copper pan should not suffer from a scratch. People who don't have your grade of copper cookware may not understand keeping it perfect--at least for a while, or 1-2x/year.


                1. re: mundty
                  Chemicalkinetics RE: mundty Mar 2, 2013 03:33 PM

                  No, you did not screw-up. Screw-up is such a strong word for it. I have a pretty good idea what kind of swirl marks you are talking about. A lot of my cookware have tham -- especially on shiny polish surface. They annoyed me in the very beginning, but later you will realize they will occur soon or later. So it is natural, and they absolutely do not affect your cookware performance.

                  Here is thing. The more I was concerning about the scratch and swirl marks, the more I was tip-toeing around the cookware. At the end, I realize that this is not the way to use a cookware. I should be using the cookware. It shouldn't be the other way -- cookware using me. I should freely and comfortably use my cookware. Yes, when it comes to actions which may actually damaging their performance, like overheating, heat shock...etc, then I will be careful. Have fun with your cookware. Enjoy.

              2. BIGGUNDOCTOR RE: mundty Mar 6, 2013 05:23 PM

                I would just polish them by hand, you can do a lot of damage with a buffer if you don't have the experience using one correctly. Copper is soft, so get some polish, and spend some time buffing the swirls out.

                Personally, I wouldn't even blink an eye over the swirls. Cookware is meant to be used.

                1. j
                  jljohn RE: mundty Mar 6, 2013 05:38 PM

                  Yes, you could polish the scratches out (as Kaleo describes or by sending it out), but, since copper cookware is built to last for generations or centuries, I'd view these marks as the first in this pan's story. Face it--there's no way this pan can get used and not marked up, especially as decades go by. I have a handful of copper pans now, and not one is pristine. My very favorites all have scratches, dings, or small dents, and one even has what I would describe as a fairly substantial gouge. It's all part of their history and part of their beauty.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: jljohn
                    kaleokahu RE: jljohn Mar 6, 2013 08:08 PM

                    Hi, Jeremy:

                    Yours is the better long-term view. However, for the "honeymoon" of a new pan (and for me 1-2x/year), there's nothing like having a nice polish.

                    I make a point of taking the exterior of every pan I acquire back to close to looking like it was new. You can't, of course, remove all the scars and warts, and the process of tarnishing starts again the second you finish polishing, so it's a Sisyphean task.

                    Coincidentally, I got the polishing bug last week (missed doing it for the Holidays), and I have 47 pieces newly polished. Pretty cool when they're all mirrored...


                  2. w
                    Wapptor RE: mundty Mar 6, 2013 08:45 PM

                    Is there any danger in letting a copper pot darken/tarnish? I recently got a new copper pot as well and cleaning/polishing it (with lemon and salt or wright's copper cream) after every use is getting a little ridiculous. I don't mind letting it look tarnished but I don't want that to be bad for it. Hmm?

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Wapptor
                      kaleokahu RE: Wapptor Mar 6, 2013 09:28 PM

                      Hi, Wapptor:

                      Nope, no danger at all.

                      Polishing after every use is crazy unless you're filthy rich and have scullery maids to do it. I'm down to polishing 1-2x/year, and if I'm entertaining I might polish one piece if I'll be serving from it.


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