How to repair an old and rusty kama ?

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Hello everyone,

 

My name is Nessim, from France. My school is Sohen Ryu Shoden An (I learned from Gilles Maucout).

I have just acquired two very old kama with a substantial quantity of rust inside.

I wanted to know if anyone had ideas on how to clean them (and if they can be cleaned).

So far, I have read solutions like : boiling bancha, hochija, sencha or rice. I have tried but, so far, I have tried with Hojicha but it leaves (1) a terrible taste and (2) a real digestive issue.

For problem (1), I have read that boiling bancha or ginger takes the taste away. I have to try that later.

For problem (2), I wonder how it happens that the kama is now making me (us, in fact) sick.

Any ideas ? Do you think they are beyond repair or should I follow a specific procedure ?

 

Thank you in advance for your help 🙂

 

Nessim

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There really are a few ways to repair rusty interiors of cast iron pots (which is all a kama is).  Look up reconditioning old cast iron cookware on the Internet for ideas.  To get rid of the old rust, the easiest is to get cleaning vinegar (very strong stuff) and simply fill the pot with it and let it sit for a week.  It will produce the most awful stinking mess of foam, but it will remove all the interior surface rust as well.  Wash that out, scrub the interior with a bristle brush to get rid of rust flakes, then boil the pot out with at least 3 full changes of water, boiling for an hour each time.  Then if you want to be “gentle”, you do the tannic acid fix – boiling with bancha for an hour each time, 3 full times, followed by boiling for 3 changes with clear water.  That will cure the immediate problem, but will not prevent further rusting.  To do that, you have to somehow restore the interior coating.  Traditionally, it is urushi, but nowadays, one can use a spray-on ceramic often used for coating exhaust manifolds in cars (!) – POR-15 is one brand.  It is stable to 400 degrees F and resistant to all normal environmental stresses.  I have used it, and it works, although it may take a couple of tries.  No color or taste to the water after treatment.  YMMV.

  • Admin Admin
    Moved from answer to a comment by admin: Hello Elmar ! Thank you for this very complete answer ! These products look quite agressive but I will give it a try ? Nessim
  • Admin Admin
    Moved from answer to a comment by admin: I believe there may already be a post on this matter somewhere on this site. I know the topic comes up often. I’ll try to post more about some of the remedies i’ve tried later, but good old scrubbing and elbow grease in partnership with the other methods is needed. As far as keeping it from rusting after you have cleaned it. If you can get a good, nice mineral deposit to build up from boiling water, it gives it a white coating that helps protect it from rust. After i cleaned mine, i boiled water from hours on end to build up the mineral deposit. I now use the kama regularly. when finished, i empty and put it back on the burner, which i turn off after about 30 seconds, to let it dry thoroughly while sitting on burner until everything cools. I’ve never tried the spray-on ceramic, but if you do, ensure that it is food-safe ? rhondarolf
  • Admin Admin
    Moved from answer to a comment by admin I believe there may already be a post on this matter somewhere on this site. I know the topic comes up often. I’ll try to post more about some of the remedies i’ve tried later, but good old scrubbing and elbow grease in partnership with the other methods is needed. As far as keeping it from rusting after you have cleaned it. If you can get a good, nice mineral deposit to build up from boiling water, it gives it a white coating that helps protect it from rust. After i cleaned mine, i boiled water from hours on end to build up the mineral deposit. I now use the kama regularly. when finished, i empty and put it back on the burner, which i turn off after about 30 seconds, to let it dry thoroughly while sitting on burner until everything cools. I’ve never tried the spray-on ceramic, but if you do, ensure that it is food-safe ? rhondarolf
  • Admin Admin
    moved by admin: Hi Rhondarolf ! Thank you for your answer too ! Indeed, some elbow grease will be required I think XD On the forum, I found infos about how to take care of a new kama. I might not have checked properly though. I’ll look it up a bit more later ! Thank you again ! Neshimu
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