Camp Ovens

Submitted: Wednesday, Mar 02, 2005 at 23:03
ThreadID: 20922 Views:11582 Replies:8 FollowUps:4
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We have recently purchased a Furphy 12" camp oven. We are a bit disappointed and are wondering if anyone has had the same problem as us.

When we first received it there was a machine oil resin on the inside of the oven. We seasoned as recommended by Furphy (Rub oil into oven 2 - 3 times over 2 days, then heat, not boil, water) and cooked our first roast. It came out oily black, bad chemical (machine oil) smell and taste. We scrubbed it inside and out with a wire brush and repeated seasoning process only this time we heated it in the oven for about 3 hours. Same deal, shocking smell and taste. Next we boiled water till dry on lid and oven to try and heat off the machine oil residue, scrubbed with detergent, then we baked in the oven for 10 hours on 300 celsius and scrubbed with detergent again. We boiled more water in it and seasoned it with olive oil (rubbed over twice) and baked in the oven again for 2 hours. It was looking good and the smell was gone so we cooked in it again. About 10 minutes into the cooking we could smell that same smell from about 8 -10 metres away. We cooked a lamb neck for the dog. It looked ok (not black) but the smell was the same old machine oil tainted smell.

We've rung Furphy who have only suggested scrubbing with detergent and sealing in with more oil and cooking lots of times for the dog who won't care about the taste or smell.

Any ideas anyone??? Our last resort is to send it back to Furphy. They have such an excellent reputation we are a bit surprised by this dilemma.
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Reply By: Member - Sand Man (SA) - Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:00

Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:00
Sounds like you are doing everything you should be to eliminate the oil used in the manufacturing process. Yes, I would return it to Furphy for a full refund.

You should not have to clean it more than once.

I have a bit of a collection of camp ovens, from an original cast iron one to the steel Bedourie Oven.
I now have what I believe is the best all round Camp Oven.

The Hillbilly brand is available in two different sizes 12.5 litre, or 7.5 litre and a range of additions/attachments are avaialble to provide even greater flexibility.
There are not the cheapest, but I had no trouble from the oil coating tainting the food. I like the Bushking so much, I don't bother anymore with the others and always find an excuse to "fire it up". With the gas ring attachment, I even use it at home instead of the Weber.

Here's the WEB site:- Hillbilly

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AnswerID: 100921

Reply By: kesh - Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:14

Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:14
Well I reckon you have bought about the best camp oven money can buy, and I hope you are fit enough to lug it around, they sure are heavy!
And your dilemna is fairly easily fixed, you have to literaly burn the oil/whatever out of it and this means building a good fire in and around the oven and lid, it will glow red hot but dont get too concerned providing the heat is even all over. Whatever you do, DONT throw water on it if you reckon its too hot, it will go bang. Let it cool down slowly.
Some years ago, after my father passed away we went back to the farm to tidy up prior to sale and retrieve any odds'n ends which belonged to me. And there I found an old camp oven of mine (a Metters-1950's) which dad had used as a container for oil changes in his L/R. I knew this because it still had oil in it! Anyway I emptied the oil, put it in a bag and took home. The treatment I gave it is exactly as above at the end of which it was just a rust colour all over. (this is what you want) Then you have to "season" it, and after some oiling/heating (cooking oil) the best way then is to cook something like necks with plenty of fat to fill the pores in the iron. You will soon notice the inside developing a hard black surface which is important you dont scour/scrub off. Only clean with plain water, NO detergent.
As I said, its about the best oven, and it will well and truly see you out. But camp oven tucker, what a way to go!
the kesh
AnswerID: 100925

Reply By: Squizzy - Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:15

Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:15

I have always put my camp ovens in a hot oven or over a fire until all machine oil has been burnt off.
Then season it with cooking oil before storing.

There has never been a problem after using that process.

Good luck,

AnswerID: 100926

Follow Up By: Jimmy90 - Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:47

Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:47
Thanks Guys for the advice.

We'll try a big fire and see what that does. If no luck we'll send it back and get a Hillbilly!!!

We bought a cheap cast iron frypan from Snowy's and seasoned it as normal and its great so we were surprised with the Furphy.


FollowupID: 358997

Follow Up By: Member - bushfix - Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 09:07

Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 09:07

if a big fire is not too much trouble then yeah, (coz it's much nicer!) but a kitchen oven is fine. Am surprised at the instruction to prepare it using water, and only heating it mildly. Can't imagine that helping at all. Must say I don't own any Furpheys, I don't like the lid design.
I use COI ovens, last well and have an excellent lid for retaining coals/ash. I heat them up empty with lid on until they are really hot, then wipe out the oil and wax with paper towels (carefully.) I then wipe into the oven and lid, a good olive oil. Sometimes repeat the process once. After use, wipe or soft scrub clean with hot water then re oil to seal the pores, and stash.
Keep at it mate, you can't beat the taste of camp oven cooking.
FollowupID: 359000

Reply By: Wizard1 - Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 15:07

Thursday, Mar 03, 2005 at 15:07
We bought a Bedourie camp oven which is spun steel a few years ago. Much lighter and robust than cast iron. After following the seasoning process it has been great.

Prado TD
Gold Coast
AnswerID: 100973

Follow Up By: Moose - Friday, Mar 04, 2005 at 14:28

Friday, Mar 04, 2005 at 14:28
Yeah - can't break them and they're excellent for cooking up a big batch of chippies in either the lid or base. As well as all the usual cooking of course. Now if they could just make them square they'd be easier to pack!
FollowupID: 359118

Reply By: Rod W - Friday, Mar 04, 2005 at 15:22

Friday, Mar 04, 2005 at 15:22
Had my CO for a few years now. Initially I would have cleaned it with hot soapy water and then sealed it using Pigs trotters/bacon fat. It has never been a problem.
AnswerID: 101129

Reply By: AdrianLR - Friday, Mar 04, 2005 at 22:21

Friday, Mar 04, 2005 at 22:21
Agree entirely - have to burn the oil off. A word of advice if you're going to do it in the kitchen - pull the batteries out of your smoke alarms!

As an aside, have a look at - the International Dutch Oven Society!

AnswerID: 101180

Reply By: Member - Brett H (QLD) - Saturday, Mar 05, 2005 at 10:52

Saturday, Mar 05, 2005 at 10:52
Occasional re-seasoning may be needed forom time to time..Just rub some oil into it and heat in the oven or fire for a while.

We have used ours at least 3 time a week for the last 5 years..We use it at home and out camping.
AnswerID: 101201

Reply By: Coops (Ex-Pilbara) - Saturday, Mar 05, 2005 at 11:10

Saturday, Mar 05, 2005 at 11:10
once you have this sorted you will have one of the finest camp ovens available so persevere as it will be worth it.
Best of luck
AnswerID: 101202

Follow Up By: Jimmy90 - Sunday, Mar 06, 2005 at 12:07

Sunday, Mar 06, 2005 at 12:07
Thanks for your advice everyone.
We have decided to perservere with it and will wait until fire ban season is over to light a big fire.
Our kitchen oven just didn't seem to get hot enough to do the job.
FollowupID: 359271

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