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gil

Flatirons

On the steam iron thread, a few folk have mentioned using flatirons, or wanting to use them if they had to iron.

Got me thinking..... I've got one I use as a doorstop.

How do you clean up the flatiron initially so it doesn't mark clothes ?

How to heat it on a woodburner or other stove top without getting the base of the iron dirty [is it just me ? but my stove tops are always dusty, rusty, oily, or otherwise grubby, and it transfers onto the bases of my cooking pans] ?

Advice, please Smile
Midland Spinner

Emery paper & elbow grease.
On both the bottom of the iron (unless it's a fancy one with a copper coating, in which case, brasso) and on the top of the woodburner. (Actually you could use a wire brush as well - even a motorised one on a drill or angle grinder, but it's not as alliterative and throws a lot of mess around the room).

Once the top of the woodburner is clean, keep a wire brush next to it and give the top a quick scrub frequently - particularly if bits of food / other rubbish fall onto it.
An added benefit of keeping the top of the burner shiny is that it will transfer heat better.
Err and don't use 'blacklead'/ Iron Paste / Graphite on the top of the stove unless you are a Goth and like black clothes. Very Happy
joanne

Midland Spinner wrote:
Err and don't use 'blacklead'/ Iron Paste / Graphite on the top of the stove unless you are a Goth and like black clothes. Very Happy


Thats OK then - I'll find some blacklead straight away Laughing
Midland Spinner

jocorless wrote:
Midland Spinner wrote:
Err and don't use 'blacklead'/ Iron Paste / Graphite on the top of the stove unless you are a Goth and like black clothes. Very Happy


Thats OK then - I'll find some blacklead straight away Laughing


Very Happy
But unless you are really really careful with the ironing there will still be some bits that aren't black!
cassy

How about a trivet to stand them on? Then they'd be in contact with the hot trivet but up out of any muck.

There's some interesting info here including box irons. Very Happy
alice

My mother and grandmother must be spinning in their graves Shocked
Belinda

I've got half a dozen or so flat irons - my mother collects them and passed a few on to me. I haven't used them for ironing but could, I suppose. I've read that you can use them on a gas burner by putting a baking sheet on top of a (turned down low) burner, and putting irons to heat on the baking sheet. I guess that would work on top of a wood burner also.

One key thing about flat irons is that they were used in pairs - one to heat and one to iron - as they cool quite quickly and unless you want long intervals, you need to use them turn and turn about. You also need cloth holders to wrap round the handles (unless they are wooden, but most have metal handles) as they will be too hot to handle.

The standard size for everyday clothes ironing is a size 4 or 5, but there are lots of other sizes intended for different purposes.

Don't iron with any that have been treated with enamel paint on the underside - this will be a later addition and won't be much good for ironing purposes.

In a power cut, I guess I could make shift to use these on the gas stove if really necessary.

If you're worried about bits of black coming off on clean clothes, have a thin layer of sheeting or calico between the iron and the clothes, to catch any marks.
goosey

I iron with them! Everything midland spinner said about cleaning them.
I use a damp clean teatowel. It protects against dirty marks, and gives steam. I have also learned not to push the irons back and forth, but press, lift, press etc. Have a practice session on some old cloth gil. Smile
I love using mine, they really did beong to my g.grandma, and I remember seeing them on the range before it was thrown out for a modern set-up. Wish I had that range.
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