1905: "Cast Iron Pan"

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xtifr
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby xtifr » Sun Oct 22, 2017 10:01 pm UTC

Zinho wrote:Herein lies the rift between the soap and no-soap cast iron users. Cast iron in its natural state is porous, and will trap soap and flavor your food with soap similar to those unsealed ceramic baking stones that were a fad a while back. People who take their cast iron camping and clean it by turning it upside down over their fire won't use soap because their seasoning takes a pretty bad hit due to the rough treatment, assuming that it gets properly seasoned at all. Foodies using it in the kitchen can keep it sealed well with a layer of polymerized oil, and have no problem with their food tasting like soap after a quick wash.

There is a widespread urban legend that soap damages the seasoning layer. Probably because it is good against plain oils, which are what you start the seasoning process with. But once it's been polymerized into long chains bound to the surface, soap does almost nothing to it.

I avoided using soap on my cast iron for decades before hearing this one debunked.

Acidic things (like tomato sauce) can damage the seasoning, although the dangers are frequently exaggerated. Still, if you do make something like spaghetti sauce in cast iron, it's probably a good idea to wash and oil it again as soon as possible.

Zinho wrote:If I get a line on good stainless steel or copper I may swap out, though; the seasoning trick works just as well on pretty much any surface, and lasts decently as long as you aren't taking a brillo pad to it.


I don't believe that's true. (And yes, I've tried.) As you mentioned above, one of the distinctive features of cast iron is that the surface is more porous than a lot of other metals. This is one of the reason that unseasoned cast iron has such a deservedly horrible reputation, but it's also the reason that it takes to seasoning so well. It's easy for the long chains of polymerized oil to bind to the surface. (Or the food to do so, if you haven't seasoned it.) I have never managed to persuade stainless or copper to achieve the sort of non-stick surface that cast iron gains so easily. It might be possible, but it's certainly not as easy.

orthogon wrote:I assume that cast iron pans are some kind of fresh hipster hell

I've been hearing people debating/arguing the pros and cons of cast iron since before the Beatles broke up. It may be a hipster thing, but it's hardly "fresh". :)

(My mom was pro, and made sure I learned the proper care and maintenance before I reached puberty.)
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ericgrau » Mon Oct 23, 2017 3:10 am UTC

sardia wrote:lol, looks who's being snooty about pans now. The hotspot thing is real...until you wait another few minutes. Thermal conductivity eventually heats up the whole pan (unfortunately including the handle) and the whole pan becomes ripping hot.

Oh the bluetooth pan is totally snooty. But it's convenient and usually takes seconds to clean. I have it connected to a wifi outlet and electric stove. It automatically controls the heat and a monkey could cook with it. Unattended. With perfect browning every single time. Saves a lot of cooking time because I do other things while I wait. Though I'll use my gas stove at times and manual control when I want more power.

But I'd still use a regular dumb pan over cast iron because I don't like hassle. I'd rather learn tricks to make the regular pan cook well than deal with that thing.

For a hotspot you stick the steak in the middle. Being off by even 20F around the edges isn't a big deal anyway. It doesn't hurt to wait a couple minutes though. The handle doesn't heat up that much because it's long and narrow, and thermal conductivity doesn't like that one bit. Even after waiting several minutes the heat loss to the air keeps it from warming up. Especially the ones with long thin metal handles with a thick cover. I google imaged that a lot of cast iron pans have short thick handles. Must suck for you. At least you don't have to touch the handles while cooking.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:44 pm UTC

ericgrau wrote: It automatically controls the heat and a monkey could cook with it. Unattended.

But, kids, don't ever leave cooking unattended, mkay? :wink:
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby twistolime » Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:52 pm UTC

With all the cast iron back-and-forth, no one's getting upset about the equinox comment? That seems like such a simple non-Randall oversight...

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby DanD » Mon Oct 23, 2017 3:03 pm UTC

twistolime wrote:With all the cast iron back-and-forth, no one's getting upset about the equinox comment? That seems like such a simple non-Randall oversight...


What oversight? If you're at the North pole a few days after the spring equinox, you get 24 hour sun. And the same if you go a few days before the fall equinox. That gets you two days of 24 hour sun that are almost, but not quite, 6 months apart, and only involves one pole.

If you want them to truly be 6 months apart, then you have to go to both the arctic and antarctic, but it doesn't have to be at the pole, depending on when you make the trips. If you do it at the solstices, you only have to go as far as the (ant)arctic circle (plus a margin for error).

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Mon Oct 23, 2017 3:26 pm UTC

DanD wrote:
twistolime wrote:With all the cast iron back-and-forth, no one's getting upset about the equinox comment? That seems like such a simple non-Randall oversight...


What oversight? If you're at the North pole a few days after the spring equinox, you get 24 hour sun. And the same if you go a few days before the fall equinox. That gets you two days of 24 hour sun that are almost, but not quite, 6 months apart, and only involves one pole.

If you want them to truly be 6 months apart, then you have to go to both the arctic and antarctic, but it doesn't have to be at the pole, depending on when you make the trips. If you do it at the solstices, you only have to go as far as the (ant)arctic circle (plus a margin for error).

This; although, in fairness, the sun at the pole is going to be extremely low in the sky just before or after the equinox. I can't imagine the pan is going to get particularly seasoned.
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Oct 23, 2017 4:12 pm UTC

The angle of sunlight being more consistently perpendicular to the angle of gravity is probably something important. And/or the lines of magnetism. (But that happens elsewhere, for other reasons, and it'd be as silly to conclude that magnetism s somehow involved in the treatment of actual metallic iron as - for those who promote magnetic bracelets for rheumatism/etc - it is ludicrous to 'prove' that it can't be having much of an effect on our non-metallic biology...)

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ericgrau » Tue Oct 24, 2017 1:20 am UTC

orthogon wrote:
ericgrau wrote: It automatically controls the heat and a monkey could cook with it. Unattended.

But, kids, don't ever leave cooking unattended, mkay? :wink:


It won't let the temp get higher than what's proper, and far from what will start a fire. It tells you when it's done and also shuts the heat off. Etc. Though I still stay in the kitchen/dining area cleaning up or doing other things so I can be there when it's time to flip or done.

Don't leave a dumb pan unattended. Smart pan, crockpot, heck rice cooker, no worries. Anything automatic is fine.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby GlassHouses » Tue Oct 24, 2017 4:37 am UTC

ericgrau wrote:Don't leave a dumb pan unattended. Smart pan, crockpot, heck rice cooker, no worries. Anything automatic is fine.

It's fine as long as it doesn't fail. True story: a guy I know once turned on his dishwasher and then went out. The dishwasher got stuck in the post-rinse heating cycle. The heating element burned and/or melted everything that was flammable and/or meltable. He ended up having to have his whole kitchen rebuilt, everything with fabric replaced throughout his entire house because of the stench that wouldn't come out (carpets, upholstered furniture, clothing). Total damage in the tens of thousands of US$. He was lucky in that (1) his house didn't burn down and (2) the insurance company didn't hold him at fault for his dumb-ass recklessness.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby pkcommando » Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:52 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:
ericgrau wrote: It automatically controls the heat and a monkey could cook with it. Unattended.

But, kids, don't ever leave cooking unattended, mkay? :wink:

But, there's a monkey, so...
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:55 pm UTC

GlassHouses wrote:
ericgrau wrote:Don't leave a dumb pan unattended. Smart pan, crockpot, heck rice cooker, no worries. Anything automatic is fine.

It's fine as long as it doesn't fail. True story: a guy I know once turned on his dishwasher and then went out. The dishwasher got stuck in the post-rinse heating cycle. The heating element burned and/or melted everything that was flammable and/or meltable. He ended up having to have his whole kitchen rebuilt, everything with fabric replaced throughout his entire house because of the stench that wouldn't come out (carpets, upholstered furniture, clothing). Total damage in the tens of thousands of US$. He was lucky in that (1) his house didn't burn down and (2) the insurance company didn't hold him at fault for his dumb-ass recklessness.

Wait, you're calling leaving a dishwasher on and going out "dumb-ass recklessness"? Literally almost everyone does that. Fire brigades might tell people not to leave things plugged in, but it's not a reasonable expectation. Dishwashers are supposed to operate unattended. Just like fridges. Sadly sometimes these things go wrong; the tragic Grenfell Tower fire in London started with a faulty fridge. But electrical appliances should be designed not to catch fire, they're recalled if a fire risk is discovered, and as a secondary safety measure, smoke alarms, extinguishers and fire retardation need to be in place. There's a residual risk of property damage, but provided such fires are rare, that's exactly what insurance is for. (What went wrong at Grenfell was not the fridge fire itself, which was detected early and easily and quickly brought under control).
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby rmsgrey » Tue Oct 24, 2017 1:17 pm UTC

The lesson is clear: never leave the house. Anything else is recklessly leaving live electricity unattended (sure, you can flip the circuit-breakers, but what if the fusebox shorts?).

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Mutex » Tue Oct 24, 2017 1:53 pm UTC

Or always leave a monkey in your kitchen.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby HES » Tue Oct 24, 2017 1:58 pm UTC

But does the monkey have bluetooth?
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Soupspoon » Tue Oct 24, 2017 2:42 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:The lesson is clear: never leave the house. Anything else is recklessly leaving live electricity unattended (sure, you can flip the circuit-breakers, but what if the fusebox shorts?).

But most accidents happen at home! You should go out! And as 75% of road accidents happen within 15 miles of home, you should go somewhere at least 15 miles away (carefully!) and then stay there, instead..!

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Mikeski » Tue Oct 24, 2017 2:50 pm UTC

HES wrote:But does the monkey have bluetooth?

If you feed it blueberries, sure.

Soupspoon wrote:
rmsgrey wrote:The lesson is clear: never leave the house. Anything else is recklessly leaving live electricity unattended (sure, you can flip the circuit-breakers, but what if the fusebox shorts?).

But most accidents happen at home! You should go out! And as 75% of road accidents happen within 15 miles of home, you should go somewhere at least 15 miles away (carefully!) and then stay there, instead..!

I just define my home as being in Duluth, then never get within 15 miles of it, and go on living in Minneapolis. Very safe that way.

You know, I might want to visit the North Shore someday. Maybe I should define a move to the southwest part of the state...

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:05 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:The lesson is clear: never leave the house. Anything else is recklessly leaving live electricity unattended (sure, you can flip the circuit-breakers, but what if the fusebox shorts?).

Just remove all the electrons from the house before you leave, and take them with you: they're pretty small and don't weigh much, after all.
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Mutex » Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:17 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:
rmsgrey wrote:The lesson is clear: never leave the house. Anything else is recklessly leaving live electricity unattended (sure, you can flip the circuit-breakers, but what if the fusebox shorts?).

Just remove all the electrons from the house before you leave, and take them with you: they're pretty small and don't weigh much, after all.

This will definitely have a positive effect on your house.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby pkcommando » Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:19 pm UTC

Mikeski wrote:I just define my home as being in Duluth, then never get within 15 miles of it, and go on living in Minneapolis. Very safe that way.

You know, I might want to visit the North Shore someday. Maybe I should define a move to the southwest part of the state...

Your safest bet would be to keep moving around the country, going from motel to motel, ensuring you never stay in one long enough that it starts to feel like a home. While also minimizing your driving as it is less safe than flying.

And while it will be confusing, hectic, expensive as hell, and put a strain on your job and family, it will also mean you'll never have to worry about taking care of any goddamned cast iron pans.
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ericgrau » Wed Oct 25, 2017 1:30 am UTC

HES wrote:But does the monkey have bluetooth?

This one does but I'd rather he have hands to flip the meat.
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby GlassHouses » Wed Oct 25, 2017 3:07 am UTC

orthogon wrote:
GlassHouses wrote:
ericgrau wrote:Don't leave a dumb pan unattended. Smart pan, crockpot, heck rice cooker, no worries. Anything automatic is fine.

It's fine as long as it doesn't fail. True story: a guy I know once turned on his dishwasher and then went out. The dishwasher got stuck in the post-rinse heating cycle. The heating element burned and/or melted everything that was flammable and/or meltable. He ended up having to have his whole kitchen rebuilt, everything with fabric replaced throughout his entire house because of the stench that wouldn't come out (carpets, upholstered furniture, clothing). Total damage in the tens of thousands of US$. He was lucky in that (1) his house didn't burn down and (2) the insurance company didn't hold him at fault for his dumb-ass recklessness.

Wait, you're calling leaving a dishwasher on and going out "dumb-ass recklessness"? Literally almost everyone does that. Fire brigades might tell people not to leave things plugged in, but it's not a reasonable expectation.

Nice strawman. Did I say you should unplug your dishwasher before leaving the house? No. It's not like these things turn themselves on on their own.
orthogon wrote:Dishwashers are supposed to operate unattended. Just like fridges.

Fridges have to be safe with no one around, because a fridge that you'd have to turn off whenever you left the house would be useless.
Dishwashers should be safe running unattended, but there's a difference between sitting in front of the thing during its entire cycle of operation, and staying close (i.e. in the house). If my aforementioned acquaintance had been at home when his dishwasher broke, he'd have noticed the smell, or been alerted by the smoke alarm, long before things turned so ugly. He could have tripped the circuit breaker, for one thing.
orthogon wrote:Sadly sometimes these things go wrong; the tragic Grenfell Tower fire in London started with a faulty fridge.

That whole building was a giant fire hazard. Are you suggesting that just because we'll never prevent fires altogether, we should not even make basic efforts to prevent them, like not covering high-rise buildings in highly flammable insulation materials, or leaving appliances with powerful heating elements, like dishwashers, washing machines, or cooking appliances, running with no one nearby to step in when something goes wrong and they do start a fire?
Yes, I do consider that behavior reckless. I'm honestly surprised that anyone would think otherwise.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ucim » Wed Oct 25, 2017 3:45 am UTC

GlassHouses wrote:It's not like these things turn themselves on on their own.
But they do, sometimes. I've had several (dumb) appliances turn themselves on unbidden and then catch fire. And an internet connected appliance can probably be turned on by a hacker in Pakistan. It's one of the advertised features (though not worded quite that way).

So no. Don't trust the machines. Especially the ones that look like they've been chewing on blueberries.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ericgrau » Wed Oct 25, 2017 4:00 am UTC

Whether they should or shouldn't, there must be a good number of people who leave the house with the dishwasher running.

I looked it up and saw recommendations against it. Within 2 articles I also saw a recommendation to not charge your cell phone overnight. A few more down a recommendation to leave appliances running at night to save energy.

Finally I thought I'd pull up the stats. 9,600 appliance fires per year. Ouch. 51,000 electrical fires per year, from faulty wiring, shorts in the wall and so on. So appliances are dangerous, but you're 5 times as likely to be in an electrical fire that isn't from leaving something running. The recommendation is to check your wiring, sockets, extension cords, etc. The lesson: #1, #2 and #3 thing don't get lousy electrical stuff and replace old faulty stuff. Including/especially what's inside your walls, but also everything else. #4 thing don't leave stuff running unattended.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Wed Oct 25, 2017 8:05 am UTC

GlassHouses wrote:
orthogon wrote:
GlassHouses wrote:
ericgrau wrote:Don't leave a dumb pan unattended. Smart pan, crockpot, heck rice cooker, no worries. Anything automatic is fine.

It's fine as long as it doesn't fail. True story: a guy I know once turned on his dishwasher and then went out. The dishwasher got stuck in the post-rinse heating cycle. The heating element burned and/or melted everything that was flammable and/or meltable. He ended up having to have his whole kitchen rebuilt, everything with fabric replaced throughout his entire house because of the stench that wouldn't come out (carpets, upholstered furniture, clothing). Total damage in the tens of thousands of US$. He was lucky in that (1) his house didn't burn down and (2) the insurance company didn't hold him at fault for his dumb-ass recklessness.

Wait, you're calling leaving a dishwasher on and going out "dumb-ass recklessness"? Literally almost everyone does that. Fire brigades might tell people not to leave things plugged in, but it's not a reasonable expectation.

Nice strawman. Did I say you should unplug your dishwasher before leaving the house? No. It's not like these things turn themselves on on their own.


Sorry, I skipped a step there. I meant to say that leaving the dishwasher running when you go out is the sort of thing that fire brigades warn against, like unplugging everything and....
ericgrau wrote:[...] to not charge your cell phone overnight. [...]

I didn't mean that particular behaviour was what you were suggesting. My point was that these things are very worthy, but people just aren't going to do them. Everybody (including, I wager, most fire officers, but excluding my mum, for some reason) charges their phone on the bedside table while they're sleeping. It's just not reasonable to ask people to do otherwise. When else are you going to charge your phone?

Both my dishwasher and washing machine have timer features where they do come on by themselves; perhaps somewhere in the manual it says that this is intended to switch on the machine while you're in the house so you don't forget, but ... it's obvious that the idea is that the machine does its wash while you're out so it's ready when you come back and you don't have to put up with the noise.

GlassHouses wrote:
orthogon wrote:Dishwashers are supposed to operate unattended. Just like fridges.

Fridges have to be safe with no one around, because a fridge that you'd have to turn off whenever you left the house would be useless.
Dishwashers should be safe running unattended, but there's a difference between sitting in front of the thing during its entire cycle of operation, and staying close (i.e. in the house). If my aforementioned acquaintance had been at home when his dishwasher broke, he'd have noticed the smell, or been alerted by the smoke alarm, long before things turned so ugly. He could have tripped the circuit breaker, for one thing.
orthogon wrote:Sadly sometimes these things go wrong; the tragic Grenfell Tower fire in London started with a faulty fridge.

That whole building was a giant fire hazard. Are you suggesting that just because we'll never prevent fires altogether, we should not even make basic efforts to prevent them, like not covering high-rise buildings in highly flammable insulation materials, or leaving appliances with powerful heating elements, like dishwashers, washing machines, or cooking appliances, running with no one nearby to step in when something goes wrong and they do start a fire?


No. With respect, I don't see how you could have even thought I was implying that. As I went on to say, we should try to make electrical appliances safe, and have smoke and fire detectors, and have buildings that retard fire, and have a fire service that can respond quickly enough. What appears to have gone wrong in Grenfell was the "buildings that arrest fire" part. The fire service arrived and put out the fire quickly before it had apparently spread; what they didn't realise was that the outside of the building was burning, which was a colossal fault in the building (specifically, the way the building was renovated). The fridge was just a proximate cause; another day it could have been a cigarette or a chip-pan.

I have to look at Grenfell Tower from my office every day - I'm horrified and haunted by what happened, and angry, and am just waiting for the enquiry to report so that I can figure out whom I should direct that anger at. Of course I don't think it's OK, or an acceptable risk.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby svenman » Wed Oct 25, 2017 9:50 am UTC

Reading through this thread, I started to wonder how people were ever allowed to have something as dangerous as electricity at home.

Then I remembered that in the days before they had electricity, people used rather more devices with contained and even open flames instead for various purposes, which I am pretty certain was even more of a safety hazard...
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby rmsgrey » Wed Oct 25, 2017 1:29 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:I have to look at Grenfell Tower from my office every day - I'm horrified and haunted by what happened, and angry, and am just waiting for the enquiry to report so that I can figure out whom I should direct that anger at. Of course I don't think it's OK, or an acceptable risk.


I'm not in any way associated with the enquiry, but, based on what I've picked up casually, it wasn't any one person or any one thing that the blame can be pinned on, but, rather, a series of failures in oversight, regulation, design, etc.

The materials used for cladding were certified as safe by someone based on, apparently, no actual empirical evidence; the certification was signed off on by a regulatory board with, apparently, no check of whether proper certification processes had been followed; the cladding was installed, apparently, primarily on aesthetic grounds, rather than because it was desirable, and in place of more practical investments; access to the tower was restricted by installation of fixed bollards...

The enquiry might pick out a single cause and say "this led to the disaster" but if you look into things, it seems pretty clear that there were a whole lot of fuckups, and several combinations of them that would have sufficed.

It's one of those situations where it's not so much a question of why it happened, but why it didn't happen sooner...

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Wed Oct 25, 2017 2:34 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:
orthogon wrote:I have to look at Grenfell Tower from my office every day - I'm horrified and haunted by what happened, and angry, and am just waiting for the enquiry to report so that I can figure out whom I should direct that anger at. Of course I don't think it's OK, or an acceptable risk.


I'm not in any way associated with the enquiry, but, based on what I've picked up casually, it wasn't any one person or any one thing that the blame can be pinned on, but, rather, a series of failures in oversight, regulation, design, etc.

The materials used for cladding were certified as safe by someone based on, apparently, no actual empirical evidence; the certification was signed off on by a regulatory board with, apparently, no check of whether proper certification processes had been followed; the cladding was installed, apparently, primarily on aesthetic grounds, rather than because it was desirable, and in place of more practical investments; access to the tower was restricted by installation of fixed bollards...

The enquiry might pick out a single cause and say "this led to the disaster" but if you look into things, it seems pretty clear that there were a whole lot of fuckups, and several combinations of them that would have sufficed.

It's one of those situations where it's not so much a question of why it happened, but why it didn't happen sooner...


Yes ... as I said here, I was sort of hoping it would turn out that many factors combined in a complex and unanticipated way, such that each individual decision was understandable and even justified on its own. The more we learn, though, the more it looks as though it was a series of bad decisions/policies/rules, none of which were justified even at the time, although perhaps most, if not all, would fall short of criminal levels of negligence.
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby somitomi » Wed Oct 25, 2017 3:50 pm UTC

svenman wrote:Reading through this thread, I started to wonder how people were ever allowed to have something as dangerous as electricity at home.

Someday we will look back and wonder how people were ever allowed to drive automobiles.
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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Oct 25, 2017 7:36 pm UTC

You sound optimistic that there will come a time from which people can look back at here with just such a perspective... ;)

("from which"? "at which"? Maybe shoulda aimed towards "whereupon" and edited round that.)

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ericgrau » Wed Oct 25, 2017 9:43 pm UTC

Cars kill thousands ever year but they're not banned because they're worth it. Similarly let's look into the cost benefit of leaving appliances running.
9,600 fires a year from appliances. Unknown% people leave them unattended but it's a rather high number. Much higher than 10% I bet, so let's use 10%. 126 million houses in the U.S. Average cost of a fire $45,109 without sprinklers, $2,166 with

Assume 0 significant fires happen while home, and 100% happen while away. Not realistic, but it's conservative for this estimate, like the 10% assumption. That means leaving appliances unattended would cause 96,000 fires a year if everyone did it. In reality not replacing or fixing shoddy appliances is probably a much bigger factor, but we're playing devil's advocate to see what the worst leaving appliances unattended can do.

96,000 x $45,109 / 126 million = $34.37 a year to leave appliances unattended without sprinklers. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.
96,000 x $2,166 / 126 million = $1.65 a year to leave appliances unattended with sprinklers. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.

I can save a lot of time and hassle by leaving appliances unattended, enough to pay that back several fold. Even via a minimum wage job if needed.
Especially since my apartment has sprinklers. So the smartest thing for me to do would be to continue to leave my appliances unattended, and it's kinda dumb to worry about this. I also have insurance in case of bad luck. And I plan on replacing anything faulty as soon as I notice it, since I'm sure that plays a much bigger role.
Last edited by ericgrau on Thu Oct 26, 2017 1:38 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Oct 25, 2017 11:05 pm UTC

Now, what if the sprinklers are faulty and catastrophically dampen running appliances? :)

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby somitomi » Thu Oct 26, 2017 9:04 am UTC

Soupspoon wrote:You sound optimistic that there will come a time from which people can look back at here with just such a perspective... ;)

("from which"? "at which"? Maybe shoulda aimed towards "whereupon" and edited round that.)

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby GlassHouses » Thu Oct 26, 2017 11:11 am UTC

Soupspoon wrote:Now, what if the sprinklers are faulty and catastrophically dampen running appliances? :)

Between the choices

1. Appliance started a fire, but insurance covered the damage
2. Appliance started a fire, but sprinklers put it out. Now I have water damage, but let's say for the sake of argument that the insurance covers that, too
3. Appliance didn't start a fire, no damage of any kind, no hassle

I greatly prefer number 3. The hassle of adopting safe habits is nothing compared to the hassle of dealing with fire and/or water damage.
Risking 1 or 2 because you find your appliances so noisy you can't stand to be in the house when they're running, or because your life is so hectic that you can't be at home for long enough time intervals to be there from start to finish of each duty cycle... that sounds awful. I guess I'm lucky.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ericgrau » Thu Oct 26, 2017 3:16 pm UTC

Also 0.008 hassles a year. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.

EDIT: miscalculation, 96,000/126 million is 0.0008 not 0.008.
Last edited by ericgrau on Fri Oct 27, 2017 1:34 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby GlassHouses » Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:08 am UTC

ericgrau wrote:Also 0.008 hassles a year. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.

So, your break-even point is 125 times being cautious vs. 1 time dealing with a fire. OK then, but I really hope my downstairs neighbors don't think like that!
I'm also not sure about your definition of "conservative." In risk assessment, that word usually refers to minimizing the worst-case damage, but you seem to have a different take.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:39 am UTC

GlassHouses wrote:
ericgrau wrote:Also 0.008 hassles a year. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.

So, your break-even point is 125 times being cautious vs. 1 time dealing with a fire. OK then, but I really hope my downstairs neighbors don't think like that!
I'm also not sure about your definition of "conservative." In risk assessment, that word usually refers to minimizing the worst-case damage, but you seem to have a different take.

I think it's 125 years being cautious, not 125 times. With, say, five acts of caution a day, you'd have to be cautious a quarter of a million times.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby GlassHouses » Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:57 am UTC

orthogon wrote:
GlassHouses wrote:
ericgrau wrote:Also 0.008 hassles a year. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.

So, your break-even point is 125 times being cautious vs. 1 time dealing with a fire. OK then, but I really hope my downstairs neighbors don't think like that!
I'm also not sure about your definition of "conservative." In risk assessment, that word usually refers to minimizing the worst-case damage, but you seem to have a different take.

I think it's 125 years being cautious, not 125 times. With, say, five acts of caution a day, you'd have to be cautious a quarter of a million times.

I have no idea how you get to that interpretation from ericgrau's 0.008 hassles/year. Given how vague his argument is, I'd rather have him clarify it himself.

EDIT:

Also, maybe I'm just getting too old to be on internet fora or something, but I really hope I'm not the only one who finds this argument of "being cautious a quarter of a million times" insufferably whiny.

I endure the hassle of being cautious every time I get in my car, and obey the speed limit and watch out for other people, and generally do my best not to kill anyone, while trying to get from A to B. Driving faster would be more fun, perhaps, but it would also cause needless danger. And I'm sure we've all seen people choose the "fuck it, I want to have fun" or the "fuck it, I'm in a hurry" approach plenty of times. Does that make it right? Or even sane?

Feel free to take dumb needless risks, I guess, but I hope to god no one who thinks like that ever ends up living near me, or being part of my family or social circle.
Last edited by GlassHouses on Fri Oct 27, 2017 11:17 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby Mutex » Fri Oct 27, 2017 11:08 am UTC

GlassHouses wrote:
orthogon wrote:
GlassHouses wrote:
ericgrau wrote:Also 0.008 hassles a year. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.

So, your break-even point is 125 times being cautious vs. 1 time dealing with a fire. OK then, but I really hope my downstairs neighbors don't think like that!
I'm also not sure about your definition of "conservative." In risk assessment, that word usually refers to minimizing the worst-case damage, but you seem to have a different take.

I think it's 125 years being cautious, not 125 times. With, say, five acts of caution a day, you'd have to be cautious a quarter of a million times.

I have no idea how you get to that interpretation from ericgrau's 0.008 hassles/year. Given how vague his argument is, I'd rather have him clarify it himself.

1 / 0.008 = 125. So 0.008 hassles a year is one every 125 years on average.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby orthogon » Fri Oct 27, 2017 1:10 pm UTC

Mutex wrote:
GlassHouses wrote:
orthogon wrote:
GlassHouses wrote:
ericgrau wrote:Also 0.008 hassles a year. Conservatively, it's probably a lot lower.

So, your break-even point is 125 times being cautious vs. 1 time dealing with a fire. OK then, but I really hope my downstairs neighbors don't think like that!
I'm also not sure about your definition of "conservative." In risk assessment, that word usually refers to minimizing the worst-case damage, but you seem to have a different take.

I think it's 125 years being cautious, not 125 times. With, say, five acts of caution a day, you'd have to be cautious a quarter of a million times.

I have no idea how you get to that interpretation from ericgrau's 0.008 hassles/year. Given how vague his argument is, I'd rather have him clarify it himself.

1 / 0.008 = 125. So 0.008 hassles a year is one every 125 years on average.

... and I think the original figure is based on this post by ericgrau:
ericgrau wrote:9,600 fires a year from appliances. Unknown% people leave them unattended but it's a rather high number. Much higher than 10% I bet, so let's use 10%. 126 million houses in the U.S. [...]

On the assumption is that 10%x126E6 = 12.6E6 houses have stuff left unattended and all the appliance fires occurred in such households, the number of fires per "non-cautious" household per year is 9600/12.6E6, which I get to be 0.0008, or a rate of one appliance fire per 1250 years per household. This is a factor of 10 different to ericgrau's result, so I guess one or more of us has slipped up. (It's not the 10% factor, since that would make it go the other way).
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1905: Cast Iron Pan

Postby ericgrau » Fri Oct 27, 2017 1:32 pm UTC

96,000/126 million = 0.0008 hassles a year, sorry. 1 every 1250 years. From "wanton carelessness" leaving appliances unattended on a regular basis.
Conservatively. It's probably a lot less house fires than that.


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