Film storage

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by alex millman, Nov 16, 2013.

  1. alex millman

    alex millman Member

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    What is the best way to store colour film?
    I have always used a fridge. I now have so much film it is starting to fill my walk in freezer. I have put it all in zip lock bags. The freezer is at -15. Am i storing it correctly?
     
  2. BradleyK

    BradleyK Subscriber

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    I do the same: I buy all my film in bulk (100+ rolls per order), and package each brick in a suitably-sized Zip-lock. I have yet to have any issues. My freezer to use time is one day (erring on the side of caution is my policy). Once removed from freezer to use I generally don't refreeze;the unused portion of the brick in moved to the refrigerator (not sure if this is necessary, but, once again, caution to avoid potential problems - real or imagined).
     
  3. bsdunek

    bsdunek Subscriber

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    As far as I know, keep it frozen. What ever you take out, put the rest back in the freezer. It's not meat, so it's OK. I have some of my Dad's Minox film from 1987, and it's still fine!
     
  4. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    I use the freezer for all my film storage.
     
  5. Wayne

    Wayne Member

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    You have a walk-in freezer? :blink:
     
  6. Wayne

    Wayne Member

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    And it's full of film? :blink:
     
  7. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Member

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    A walk-in freezer!? :confused:
    Long term storage of film in a deep freeze can induce embrittlement of the emulsion. Among other risks, when the film is released from the chilled environment, moisture can build up and mottle the emulsion. You really need to store it carefully and conscientiously and allow it the time to acclimatise to ambient temperatures. I store my own film at –20°C for long term (acknowledging the risks I mentioned) and at normal fridge temperature for short-term, go-to use.
     
  8. alex millman

    alex millman Member

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    i always allow a few hours to defrost before use. I then re-freeze what i don't use.

    p.s. i could only imagine my freezer being full of film...
     
  9. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Have you any references to this?
     
  10. wildbill

    wildbill Member

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    I've heard him say it in the past but I've never heard of a case of brittle film nor experienced it myself with film (e6, b+w)that has been frozen for 20+ years. I'm sure there are exceptions but........where?
     
  11. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    I have two large freezers with lots of film. One is on the East Coast and the other is one the West Coast.:tongue:
     
  12. John Weinland

    John Weinland Member

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    You may want to use recyclable bags of desiccant inside the moisture-tight wrapping when you first wrap the film, and allow enough time to thoroughly dry the film inside BEFORE you either freeze it or refrigerate it. Similarly, when you remove the wrapped film from refrigeration, allow plenty of time (at least several hours) for the wrapping and film to come to room temperature before unwrapping. Without desiccant you run a double-risk of ice or moisture on the film both when freezing and thawing. I've tried freezing, but I found a 50-deg cool location the best, mostly from a convenience point-of-view, and no problems with moderately out-of-date film. Very long-term storage of film and paper might demand freezing. Military-surplus stores sometimes have inexpensive recyclable silica-type desiccant bags.
     
  13. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    alex millman, I would like to HIJACK your thread (please), but it is highly relevant to this thread:

    Can anyone out there give definitive information as to whether storing in aluminum foil, shiny side out, (in addition, of course, to cold storage), helps alleviate age fog by deflecting non-visual energy rays? - David Lyga
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
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  15. wildbill

    wildbill Member

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    David, that won't help. You'd need lead. That's what I've read in previous threads concerning cosmic rays.
     
  16. smithdoor

    smithdoor Member

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    Do not try this at home
    Put film in a wax in open field leave for over 100 years then developed. I read this one in the paper a few years ago with the photo.

    I have use the cold storage and no cold both work for black and white when does it expire if ever may was just good luck The oldest I have use was over 20 years and not store right.
    The safe way is use the freezer in a box in a black bag.

    Dave
     
  17. Sal Santamaura

    Sal Santamaura Member

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    Lead won't help either. The only way to stop cosmic radiation from fogging film over time would be storing it a substantial distance underground. Abandoned mines have been used for this purpose.

    Just make sure the mine you choose isn't surrounded by radioactive granite. :D Salt mines are good.

    Here's a company that offers what you seek:


    If you find out the cost for some refrigerated space in its Kansas City facility, please let us know what that is. I've always been afraid to ask, anticipating a huge number.
     
  18. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    I believe Kodak stores TMZ 3200 in salt mines. Now, that is reason for its being so expensive. (So, then, why is Delta 3200 a BETTER film?)

    Just want to affirm wildbill: So, aluminum foil provides absolute NO PROTECTION WHATSOVER from cosmic rays? Anyone disagree or are all in accordance? - David Lyga
     
  19. Chris Douglas

    Chris Douglas Member

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    Remember the Disney flic, "The Strange Case of the Cosmic Rays"? In that cartoon, cosmic rays go through lead like its not there. No first hand experience though.
     
  20. Randy Moe

    Randy Moe Member

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    Is frozen that much better than say 36 degrees?

    Have there been any studies?

    I'm 62, if I get real lucky I live to 72, 82 or maybe 92. I have used lots of poorly stored film, by other people of course :smile: that is 30 years old and I found some of it pretty darn good!
     
  21. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    Randy, I am a year older than you and echo your sentiments. Some of the stuff simply refuses to go bad. The slower the better. My Panatomic-X is as new. - David Lyga
     
  22. Sal Santamaura

    Sal Santamaura Member

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    Tense correction -- "stored." TMZ was discontinued 13 months ago:


    Any still in the retail pipeline today would probably be fogging nicely. :D

    None that would make a measurable difference in fogging of stored film. The "tinfoil hat brigade" might not agree, however. :D
     
  23. ambaker

    ambaker Subscriber

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    In deference to David, it cannot be said that aluminum provides absolutely no protection. However, at roughly 1/5 the density of lead, the difference between aluminum and nothing is not readily measurable.

    Shiny side in or out would not make a difference.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
     
  24. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Aluminum foil may not protect you from cosmic rays, but if you make it into a hat, you can probably find lots of room for yourself on the bus.
     
  25. craygc

    craygc Member

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    Here's an earlier thread I had about issues with frozen film. I eventually had the negatives sent to Ilford for examination. The exact cause remains "inconclusive", however the best explanation was that freezing/defrosting - ie moisture - was the only likely potential cause. Since this issue first raised its head, I have witnessed enough of the problem that I would say that 35mm film shouldn't be frozen in its plastic canister ONLY - Im trashing all my film stored this way as its too unpredicable. Other rolls purchased at the same time and having gone through the same identical treatment, but remained in their cellophane and cardboard packaging of bricks of 10, appear to be fine.
     
  26. AgX

    AgX Member

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    I do not see any advantage, except for handling and may be odours, in applying a second casing next to those PE canisters for freezing film.