Then I removed the pan from the vinegar and put it into some fresh water to which I added a tablespoon of baking soda to neutralize the acid. I used a wire brush, followed by steel wool, to remove every bit of the rust. Then I coated the pans in lard and baked them for 2 hours at 350 degrees. I let them cool and then repeated that seasoning process twice more per pan. Here are before and after pictures of the pans.
Small Pan Before Restoration
Small Pan After Stripping
Small Pan After Seasoning
Medium Pan Before Restoration
Medium Pan After Stripping
Medium Pan After Seasoning
Large Pan Before Stripping
(The bottom of this pan looked good)
Large Pan After Stripping
Large Pan After Seasoning
I am very happy with the method I chose for removing the rust. It did a great job, quickly and easily, and without removing all the original seasoning. I'm not a collector and do not care one bit if my pans look perfect. They worked hard for that seasoning and I see absolutely no reason to strip them all the way down to bare metal. The vinegar removed only the rust. With a few uses the coloring will even out. I used both the small and medium pans, today. LOVE THEM! Even more than I thought I would. After my 3 coats of seasoning the pans are perfectly non-stick. Here's the small pan frying up our morning eggs.
And the medium pan making a grilled cheese sandwich.
I will never go back to those lame, worthless Teflon fry pans. These cast iron pans work great on my glass topped range (which I loathe). The pans are flat so they heat up quickly and evenly...unlike my Teflon pans with their weird concave bottoms. Clean up is a snap. NO SOAP! Run them under hot water and scrub with a nylon Quickie brush. Then set them back onto the warm burner to dry and coat them with a little bit of corn oil. That's it. Easie peasie. Treated properly they should never rust again.