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Crock pots for pickle


#1

Hello to everyone who uses or plans to buy old crock pots for pickle.
Be sure you get a tube of silicon gasket sealer and go around the seam
between the ceramic crock and the metal jacket, as well as any other
seams where the pickle could seep in and erode the controls/wiring.
This will keep you pickling and safe, inexpensively, for a long time.
Pat


#2

If you go to your local cheapie department store you can pick up a
new crock pot for $10-$20. The prices are really quite reasonable and
there’s no need to hunt up parts or repair…which could cost you more
in time and $$$. Lisa


#3
  Hello to everyone who uses or plans to buy old crock pots for
pickle. Be sure you get a tube of silicon gasket sealer and go
around the seam between the ceramic crock and the metal jacket, 

Does this mean that we need to caulk the ceramic crock to the metal
jacket (thereby making the ceramic crock non-removable?)

Also … does anyone know if it’s okay to use the plastic lid that
comes with the crock to cover the pickle solution when not in use?
In other words, do I need to be concerned about a possible chemical
reaction between the pickle (or its fumes) and the plastic?

– Constance


#4

Hi -

Just want to add my problem to the mix here. Somehow, the used crock
pot that I picked up at a thrift store for $3 - seemed to leak through
the whole body of the bowl - there were no visible cracks. This model
has a brown colored glossy glaze with a plastic cover. The corrosion
to the heating element was similar to what Pat Hicks described - but
because the pickle seemed to permeate and leak through the whole bowl
and not through any visible seams, I’m not real sure if silicone seal
would have helped in my case.

I purchased the used crock pot for pickling larger pieces - but most
likely will search for a larger pyrex covered container to replace it.
Think I’ll use an idea mentioned in this string and smash this crock
pot before throwing it away - to make sure that no one cooks with it
in the future. . . thanks for the GOOD IDEA!!!

I already threw away the corroded heating element. For now, the
crock pot sits in an old stainless steel pot to catch any residue that
seeps through - and I pour the pickle in a jar between uses for larger
pieces. My work is mostly jewelry sized - and so, I still use a
smaller covered pyrex container - that has worked well for many years.
The idea just occured to me as I write this - that maybe a pyrex
double boiler set up might be an interesting choice - for heating
pickle.

Any recommendations out there of a brand of a “new” crock pot that
would not have the problem that mine did? I, also, won’t be picking
up another used one.

Just thought I’d mention the problem I experienced. For those people
using a crock pot, it is definitely a good idea to peek at the heating
element every now and make sure there isn’t any corrosion going on.
:slight_smile:

Cynthia


#5

Constance,

I have used the plastic lid on my crock pot for years and it is fine.
It has clouded a bit over the years but otherwise there is no change.

Cande


#6

I also had this pot, and had the same problem, now I look for the
ones that do not have the BROWN colored bowl. I have a pink one that
works fine, and my favorite is the pyrex type.


#7

Don’t calk it in keep it removable so you can clean it, the lid works
OK with sparex or similar pickles but sulfuric acid may be another
story. If you keep the lid on while plugged in it will get too hot
after a while so be sure not to boil it. Sincerely,

ROBERT L. MARTIN
Yukhan@aol.com


#8

Hi Constance,

The plastic lid won’t react with the pickle as long as it doesn’t
have a metal screw holding the handle. If so put a little silicone
sealant over the screw to keep the acid from getting to it.

Thanks,

Ken Kotoski
MPG Repair
Members of MJSA.
Authorized Ney Service Center
www.mpgrepair.com - We repair the tools jewelers use.


#9
 Also ... does anyone know if it's okay to use the plastic lid that
comes with the crock to cover the pickle solution when not in use?
In other words, do I need to be concerned about a possible chemical
reaction between the pickle (or its fumes) and the plastic?

I’ve been using a small crock that I too purchased from a thrift
store for the past 4 years with no problem so far! It’s not removable
however, I have to carry the whole unit when cleaning it. It has a
plastic lid, no problems so far with that either. It’s kept plugged
in only during the time needed, about 13 to 16 hours per day, with a
average of 2 days a week. The Craft Guild that I attend also use
crocks for pickling, the time in use is of course more extensive and
so far, no problem.

Terri Collier
Dallas, TX
@scollier


#10

piece style, new or used, the acid seeps through\ugh to the nicrome
heating element, then no heat. For ~3 years I’ve used a removable
crock and as the seams were solid I never sealed the heating element,
so far no problem, I expect since the separate type units can be used
without burn out it must be a quartz/ceramic heating element (self
protected from acid). For the last 2 years I’ve mostly used a small
one quart/liter separate type crock, uses less acid, heats much faster
(less than 1/2 hour), and has a smaller footprint in my work space.

Again, I do use Citric Acid, the small pot has a “soft” plastic lid
(opaque), and no problems apparent (still flexible with no color
change), the hard clear plastic lid “fogged” and got haze cracking so
I found a old glass lid, but even my kitchen cooking pot’s clear
plastic lid had the same problem (too much chili???), I theorize the
heat and clear plastic are a bad combo, most new units have gone back
to glass (more heat retaining any way). Hope these rambling thought
add a little.

Humbly, Ed-


#11

All, Regarding crock pots for pickleing,I have been using them
for twenty years and I find that they are regularly available at
thrift shops, swap meets, rummage sales and garage sales AND they are
usually new. Why…because the modern American housewife is too
busy to use them and she probably also holds down a job and has
little time for cooking. Furthermore, various electric cooking
gadgets are popular as gifts and the crock pot, being cheap, is often
one of those gifts. If the recipient is not into cooking they become
white Elephants and they eventually get tossed or donated. Like many
other white Elephants, since they had little appeal they are usually
sold for a pittance. ( I never pay more than two or three dollars )

If you are the average jeweler, the medium sized pot with a removable
pot is your best bet. Never get a used pot. There is no need to seal
the edge of the pot. Even if you have one of the non-removable types,
you can keep it in good shape by not immersing it when cleaning it.
Normally I get a couple or three years use from each pot…about a
dollar per year !( A tube of silicone sealant costs three dollars or
more.) If you are an occaisional jeweler, a small pot pourri pot will
do the job quite nicely provided you are not doing big items. Keeping
the plastic lid on the pot will maintain a higher temperature and the
pickle will not affect it. It will also mitigate the rusting of your
tools…try to keep your tools away from the pickle ! As for
myself, I think that busy housewives are missing a good bet by not
using their crock pots. I really enjoy cooking and I like to whip up
a batch of stew or chili beans over the weekend so that I can have
tasty lunches at the shop during the week, Nothing does it better
than a crock pot ! Ron at Mills Gem, Los Osos, CA.


#12

If I am doing a lot of solder work, I will use my crock pot. But if
it’s a small job, I keep a small glass jar about three-fourths full
of pickle solution that I heat in the microwave.


#13

I put water in the crock pot then put a jar of pickle in the
water…then turn on the crock pot…the outside water heats up,
thereby heating the immersed jar of pickle…I use a pickling
jar…Ball I think is the Brand name…Susan Chastain


#14

Here’s a simple alternative to the crock pot. For years now all I’ve
used is a pyrex casserole dish which rests on top of an old paint tin
(lid removed). The paint tin has a hole cut in the side to allow a
cable with light socket connection to be attached and the light bulb
then sits inside and does the warming. Takes a little while to warm up
but is just a nice temperature to pickle quickly (I use a 1:10
sulphuric acid/water solution) without boiling off the water too
quickly. I always leave the lid on except when putting bits in and
taking them out.

Hope this helps Renate in Adelaide where the winter is producing lots
of rainless clouds at the moment.


#15

Cynthia,

You and Pat Hicks are SO right!  Your description of the pickle

seeping through the sides of the glazed ceramic pot fits my own
experience. Silicone wouldn’t have stopped this leak.

    Just want to add my problem to the mix here. Somehow, the used
crock pot that I picked up at a thrift store for $3 - seemed to
leak through the whole body of the bowl - there were no visible
cracks.  This model has a brown colored glossy glaze with a plastic
cover.  
Admittedly it took several years of use, but one day the crock pot

did not get hot. I took it apart to see what was going on. There
were visible cracks, staining, and the heating elements (wire
wrapped around the sides) were corroded through.

I now use a coffee mug warmer with a thick coffee mug and a large

watch glass for the cover. Works fine so far and new mugs are
CHEAP. When the warmer dies, I’ve saved a small (4 cup) coffee maker
base (with warmer) for the next go round. Anyone using a coffee
maker warming base? If it’s an unsafe thing, I’d like to know.

Judy in Kansas where summer is here, the wheat is golden and

harvesters are cutting 24/7.

Judy M. Willingham, R.S.
Biological and Agricultural Engineering
237 Seaton Hall
Kansas State University
Manhattan KS 66506
(785) 532-2936


#16

i’ve used crock pots for pickle , plating baths and electroforming
they are great. however my favorite pickle pot has always been a very
large labratory beaker with an ordinary fish tank heater. has never
overheated and is easy to work with because its clear so the
occasional dropped piece is easily retrieved. just my two cents.

Talk to you later Dave Otto


#17

Cynthia, in regards to the crock pot seepage problem, I bought myself
a cheap new crock pot at Kmart, it’s a 1 1/2 quart size, and there are
much larger ones available. Anyhow it’s a glazed ceramic/stoneware
bowl, that, in turn, is in a sealed aluminum (I think) heater element
bowl, with a glass top and rubber ring. I haven’t had any problems
with it at all. The only draw back on the bottom of the line model is
that there is no temperature setting, it is equivalent to medium on
most other crock pots. The $20 & $30 dollar rich man models have this
feature. That hasn’t seemed to be a problem, though, as I don’t leave
it cooking for too long, the fumes form the pickle bother me. The
brand is a “Rival - Crock Pot” brand “Stone Ware Slow Cooker” and it
was $9.99 which I thought was a great price. I won’t be smashing it
anytime soon! :slight_smile:

-Drew
www.fiodh.com


#18

I may have missed earlier bits of this thread, but I’ve found a very
safe benchtop solution by using a pyrex 2 cup measure and a coffee mug
warmer. Never gets too hot, not a danger to leave on for hours and
keeps pickle at a good temp. Easy clean up and no corrosion if you
wipe down the warmer now and then.

Jane Armstrong


#19

First, I know there are pots with removable crocks but I’ve only used
the others. Would still suggest sealing those seams - no reason why
not. Second, it is always best to start with new ones if you can.
Some really need used. But there are so many to choose from in every
thrift shop and tag sale you can often find one that hasn’t been used
at all or not much. Try that first. The leaking crock needn’t have
shown a visible crack. Some are just porous from being well used with
things acidic and if used long with strong pickle the glaze degrades
anyway. On cheaper pots that glaze may be very thin. What ever brand,
look for the best known ones associated with quality. And, don’t
expect them to work forever. The old saying “you get what you pay
for” usually holds true. Happy pickling, Pat


#20

They come in various sizes. Just pick the smallest size that the
largest pieces you make will fit into – keeping in mind that
bracelets will often still be flat, rather than shaped to the wrist.
Check the yard sales; you can often find one for a very good price.

Margaret