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Old 06-21-2013, 06:41 AM   #16
DriveShaft
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Joined: May 2005
Oddometer: 4,325
Some of The better mid-range pans I've used keep steel as the working surface,, using a gauge of steel that would normally be considered cheap. And bond a thick hunk of aluminum (wrapped in steel for the aesthetics) to the bottom to help w/ heat conduction, and dispersion. Before we plunked down the dollars on the all-clad, our two favorite pans were a real thick aluminum non-stick (I want to say circulon) and some martha stewart branded no-name thing w/ the extra-thick bonded base. It was verry effective. You had to anticipate a little more thermal momentum, but that was relatively easy to anticipate and account for. The difference in price for thick-gauge multi-ply formed sheet vs the bonded base is pretty significant. Great for frying pans, where the bottom surface is the only surface that matters.
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