A while back, I bought an ordinary-looking pizza cutter with a dull grey handle. However, I soon found out the hard way that the handle is made from some weird metal or alloy that reacts with water, staining everything it touches black:

enter image description here

"Water" here includes even slightly moist or sweaty hands, making this a real pain to use. What is this stuff and how do I stop it from staining? And for extra credit, why on earth would you make a hand-held kitchen utensil from it?!

  • Is it heavy enough to be cast iron? Cast iron teapots do that, it's highly annoying. – Yamikuronue Apr 12 '15 at 21:11
  • I don't think so: it's pretty heavy, but not that heavy? Also, the original color was a dull medium grey (see eg. the light patch on the left side near the bottom of the handle), whereas all the cast iron I've ever seen is black or close to it. – lambshaanxy Apr 12 '15 at 21:14
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    If it's that big of an issue, I recommend trashing it and buying a new one... they aren't that expensive and the ATK top rated one from OXO is $13. – Catija Apr 12 '15 at 22:03
  • Spray painting the handle should solve the problem, but it would probably be cheaper to just to get a new cutter like Catija suggested. – Ross Ridge Apr 12 '15 at 22:18
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    Do you remember the brand? Knowing that is the most likely way of finding out what it's made out of. I did an image search for these cutters and couldn't find anything identical to it in the images or on Amazon. Brand and/or the country it was purchased in will help. – Catija Apr 13 '15 at 0:31

Mystery solved! At Catija's prompting, I managed to dig up the cutter on the website of the shop I bought it from, the Chef's Hat in Melbourne, Australia:

enter image description here


So turns out the handle is aluminum (aluminium), which can be discolored black if the alloy is not dishwasher-safe, which this clearly wasn't. Time to ask a new question about what, if anything, I can do to fix it!

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    So can you polish it and stop putting it in the DW? – Catija Apr 13 '15 at 2:07
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    I'd see if you can take the blade off, then scower with steel wool, spray with a metal spray primer, and some new color/top coat. A clear coat would probably make it dishwasher safe. The three cans of spray paint, and a spray can trigger probably cost more than a replacement. – fontophilic Apr 13 '15 at 17:29
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    Independently of the alloy used, cutting implements don't go into the dishwasher, it blunts them in no time. Anything except for a butter knife should be washed by hand. I would guess that this is why the manufacturer didn't care to choose a dishwasher safe alloy for a pizza wheel. – rumtscho Apr 13 '15 at 19:54
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    for $6.60...buy a new one...May I recommend this pizza cutter from Amazon I have one and it is great. [IMHO] – Cos Callis Apr 14 '15 at 1:33

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