My newer pans scratch really easily but I noticed that my mother's older, (bought in the 70s I think) heavier stainless pans don't scratch easily at all. The inside of hers looks a bit like the bottom (exterior) of my newer pan, sort of like a stainless steel sink, heavy duty. Hers are super easy to clean, mine always need baking soda to clean. I have a bottom of the line Henckels pan and a reasonably good Denby pan, both 18/10 stainless I think but they are very thin on the sides. They also look like they have a bit of a finish to make them look shiny. I'm wondering if the older pans are a lot better than what is available now. I hope I haven't repeated any questions answered before. Thanks!
Without question, newly manufactured metalware does not match the quality of the same items made several decades ago.
I collect a classic style of (copper bottomed) stainless steel cookware that used to be manufactured in the United States. The oldest pieces are heavier and have a finer, more durable finished cooking surface than newer items.
A well-maintained old pan is a treasure, that can often be had for very little money at a yard sale or flea market, and will be far superior to similarly styled brand new cookware.
1Without question, you have to be more careful in selecting which metalware you buy. The good brands are still (at least) as good as the ones several decades ago, but unfortunately mass production and cheap steel introduced a truck load of new sub standard cooking ware on the market that ruin the name of the good ones. Dec 20, 2015 at 16:26