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How to store LC enamel cookware: can you stack it?

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lafondu Mar 12, 2013 01:48 PM

I recently bought several LC pieces: 3 dutch ovens, grill pan, fry pan. They are still in their boxes. My other cookware is stacked in cupboards in the kitchen. What is the best way to store LC and still save space? Thanks!

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  1. Jay F Mar 12, 2013 02:15 PM

    Insert three of those white bumpers on the largest of the dutch oven, equidistant, like an equilateral triangle. Turn the largest lid over, and rest it on the bumpers, so that the white side is what you see.

    Stack the next biggest dutch oven on the white surface, insert three bumpers on it, then the lid, upside down.

    When you get to the top, you can place the lid on right-side-up.

    This is to prevent scratching the lid on the black surface of the dutch oven.

    The grill pan and fry pan, you may want to use sheets of large bubblewrap. I only have one fry pan, and I use it so often, it stays on the stove nearly full-time. But if I store it on a shelf, I use bubble wrap.

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      foiegras Mar 12, 2013 02:18 PM

      i stack smaller pieces inside larger pieces. i don't use any special equipment, i expect pots and pans to be tough ;)

      1. kaleokahu Mar 12, 2013 05:33 PM

        Hi, lafondu:

        You want to display it? If so, I'd either put them on shelves or an etagere *unstacked*. Or hang the pans and get a rack for the lids.

        If you just want to store the pieces, I'd nest/stack whatever fits, interleaved with light dish towels. There is a seller on eBay who sells round pan covers with elastic-corded rims (i.e., shaped like a graduated set of shower caps) that work pretty well, too.

        Aloha,
        Kaleo

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          ellabee Mar 13, 2013 08:37 AM

          I strongly advise a dish towel or some kind of padding between enameled cast iron pieces that are stacked.

          There's a set of four LC gratin pans here that nest (#32, 28, 24, 20), and between them I use a piece of the perforated-foam sold for shelf liner.

          1. l
            lafondu Mar 13, 2013 08:48 AM

            Thanks to everyone for your responses! I think I'll use a combination of dish towels and foam to put between the pieces so they don't chip. :)

            1. pamf Mar 13, 2013 01:16 PM

              LC usually are packed with small plastic clips that are used to separate the pots from the lids during shipping. You might save these and use them for storing.

              1. CindyJ Mar 14, 2013 10:35 AM

                I use a double thickness of paper towels between my nested LC pots.

                1. sunshine842 Mar 14, 2013 11:00 AM

                  There are ads everywhere for special felt doilies to go between your pots and pans to keep them from scratching....

                  ...I just use cotton dishcloths (usually old ones that are stained or starting to get threadbare - I'm recycling!) -- they're not quite as pretty, but they're a lot cheaper, and I haven't yet had the problem of someone going through my cupboards and hyperventilating that I use cotton dishcloths instead of fancy felt doilies.

                  Ikea sells cotton dish towels for about 50 cents apiece, by the way.

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                    foiegras Mar 14, 2013 05:55 PM

                    wow ... i'm honestly stunned at all the doilies, dishcloths, bumpers, etc. that people are using. these are items you literally light a fire under :) i don't put doilies between my glass and china items either. i just place and retrieve everything carefully.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: foiegras
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                      ellabee Mar 14, 2013 07:18 PM

                      Enameled cast iron pieces weigh many times what most glass and china items do (as well as usually costing many times more), yet are just as subject to chipping if banged into something else hard -- like another enameled cast iron pan.

                      Most ECI pieces have some bare iron on their base, which will abrade enamel if they sit directly on it (weight aggravates this effect). A piece of cloth is a pretty simple and inexpensive bit of protection for equipment that lasts for decades if kept intact.

                      1. re: ellabee
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                        foiegras Mar 14, 2013 07:41 PM

                        hmm, all my LC pieces have 100% enameled bottoms.

                        1. re: foiegras
                          e
                          ellabee Mar 14, 2013 08:01 PM

                          Whether bare or enameled, that raised ring on the base of LC pieces will abrade enamel it's sitting on.

                          Quite a few older LC pieces, some Descoware, and virtually all Copco pieces have bare iron bases.

                          1. re: ellabee
                            law_doc89 Mar 16, 2013 08:58 AM

                            These are a big investment and will last for ever with care. Same for your china, so why not a simple precaution

                            1. re: law_doc89
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                              foiegras Mar 16, 2013 09:49 PM

                              because they're already lasting forever without my being precious about it.

                              the reality is that the chips on my LC have all come from my dropping things. it happens, rarely, but it happens and when it does it typically causes damage. i'm glad i don't freak out about it.

                              i have a lot more money in china and glass than i do in cookware. i have some shelves padded, but i do that more for things i use everyday that are typically less expensive. makes it easier to unload the dishwasher quickly. it's quite rare than anything breaks or gets damaged. I think i've had to discard one piece of fine china ever (Wedgwood i use everyday) and one piece of vintage elegant glass, in 2.5 decades. and i'm not one to keep chipped and cracked things around--my things are undamaged.

                              1. re: foiegras
                                law_doc89 Mar 17, 2013 06:08 AM

                                Yeah, I didn't mean to imply playing bean bag with the china. It should break rarely. I have broken stem ware while washing it, and once, place a stem upside down not realizing that it would form a vacuum quickly, stem snapped right off when I picked it up.

                        2. re: ellabee
                          kaleokahu Mar 16, 2013 09:36 AM

                          Hi, ellabee:

                          I couldn'd agree more. But I'll add that the dings that I've accumulated on my ECI from stacking/nesting have mostly come from high-psi points of contact, e.g., from where handles, rims or bottom edges contact another pan at point or small area. IMO, wherever there's a small point of enamel-on-enamel contact (and weight or force behind it), you're asking for trouble.

                          Aloha,
                          Kaleo

                        3. re: foiegras
                          sunshine842 Mar 15, 2013 01:06 AM

                          it's not the outside I'm worried about, as much as the damage the bottom causes to the inside surfaces of my other pots and pans.

                          Heat resistance and abrasion resistance aren't the same thing.

                          (It also keeps my pots and pans from clattering every time I open that cupboard - they're on pull-out drawers.)

                        4. THoey1963 Mar 14, 2013 08:47 PM

                          I only have two pieces, the round flat griddle and the round grill. They have been sitting stacked for two years unless I am using one. I am careful when moving one. So far, no wear marks on either.

                          1. sherrib Mar 15, 2013 03:43 AM

                            Yeah, the rim of the pot easily scratches the lid if the lid is resting upside down on it. I use four of those bumpers and stack pots on top of each other. Twice now I've emailed the LC customer service and they have been quick to mail me a bunch of bumpers. Towels work too. Oddly enough, the stains inside my pots don't bother me at all, but scratches or stains on the outer surface annoy me.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: sherrib
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                              dixiegal Mar 16, 2013 04:47 AM

                              LC will mail the bumpers, if I ask?. I am going to do that. That is how I store my DOs. I love using those bumpers. And LCs are the best. I have some from another manufacture and they are wide, soft, rubbery, and stick to the pot and lid.

                              1. re: dixiegal
                                sherrib Mar 16, 2013 08:40 AM

                                dixiegal,
                                I've emailed their customer service people twice (at least a year between emails). Both times, they responded right away and mailed them to me, no problems.

                                1. re: sherrib
                                  law_doc89 Mar 16, 2013 08:56 AM

                                  I have just kept the boxes, but I will write for bumpers now. Thanks.

                                  1. re: law_doc89
                                    Jay F Mar 16, 2013 08:59 AM

                                    Call or write Le Creuset: http://cookware.lecreuset.com/cookwar...

                            2. John E. Mar 15, 2013 10:36 PM

                              There are a lot of things you could use to protect and separate your pans. We use Chinet paper plates to protect them, they might work for you as well. The reason I think they would wotk better than the styrofoam/rubber bumpers, towels etc. is that they do not require you to spread them out over the interior surface of any of your kettles/pans. They are thick enough and sturdy enough to do the job and are easy to replace.

                              1. tanuki soup Mar 16, 2013 07:26 AM

                                If you can't get those LC bumpers easily, you can just go to any DIY store and buy some clear flexible plastic tubing (like the tubing for aquariums, but larger in diameter and with thicker walls). Just cut the tubing into rings about half an inch wide, split each ring, and pop three of them around the rim of your DO before putting on the inverted lid.

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