If you were going to buy a freezer just for storing film....

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Matthew Cherry, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. Matthew Cherry

    Matthew Cherry Member

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    Would you get a chest freezer or an upright? Or does it make no difference?

    I'm looking at getting a commercial upright freezer for film storage, but didn't know if there was a reason to consider a chest version.

    Thanks!
     
  2. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    Chest freezers tend to be more energy efficient but take up more floor space. I've got a chest freezer for the purpose.
     
  3. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    I use a chest freezer and it stays very cold but getting things out of it can be a PIA if what you want is on the bottom.
     
  4. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    If you need to store food as well as film, buy an upright. For better efficiency in the summer a unit in an air conditioned space uses less energy. It's amazing how many people have refrigerators and freezers in hot garages and then wonder why their bills are high.
     
  5. Matthew Cherry

    Matthew Cherry Member

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    It will only be for film (and maybe some paper/chemistry - if that is even an option). It will be stored in a basement.
     
  6. paul_c5x4

    paul_c5x4 Subscriber

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    Chest freezer takes up more floor space for sure, but as well as being more energy efficient, it can also double as a temporary desk/worktop.
     
  7. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    In this day and age I'd be stocking it with food as well. Costs are high and going up and buying larger quantities for stock now will be of benefit to ones bottom line later. Just look at your upcoming tax liabilities. No matter who gets in office, one way or another we're all going to suffer. Since your freezing film you may as well buy half a cow or freeze some vegetables.
     
  8. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    I have a 14 cu ft chest freezer in my basement, use it solely for film and paper. I also have a dorm refridgerator full of film.
     
  9. ndrs

    ndrs Subscriber

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    That's what I thought when I bought a chest freezer. Now it's full and has never seen a scrap of food.
     
  10. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    Or place for folding laundry.
     
  11. flatulent1

    flatulent1 Subscriber

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    I'm inclined to want a smaller second refrigerator down in the basement, to store film AND beer.
     
  12. jcoldslabs

    jcoldslabs Member

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    Got a chest freezer in my basement. We bought it ten years ago for food, but it has gradually given itself over to the point that right now it's all film except for a big bag of frozen chicken breasts.

    Jonathan
     
  13. BradleyK

    BradleyK Member

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    If I were to buy a freezer just to store film, I would - as I did - opt for a chest freezer. While the freezer does occupy a sizeable footprint, it does hold a great deal of film and paper (probably a good two or three year supply - based on current consumption) and it is very energy efficient. In turn, I also picked up an 18cu.ft. Kenmore upright refrigerator for archival storage (following Wilhelm's advice) of my negs and slides; the freezer compartment, of course, can - and soon will - be used to hold more film...perhaps another 50 roll pro-pack of HP5 PLus or Tri-X (you really can never have enough of either on hand...).
     
  14. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    Chest freezers are more efficient, probably because all the cold air doesn't fall out when you open them. Before you buy anything, look at the rated annual power consumption (kWh/year) and multiply that out by your electricity price to get running costs. If you live anywhere like I do and pay 30c/kWh, those numbers will start to become very important to you. Here in Adelaide, it's not really worth stockpiling huge amounts of frozen film unless you know for certain that there is about to be a big price rise. My freezer has about 30L of film in it, the rest is bulk-prepared food - make a massive batch on the weekend, freeze portions and then nuke for gourmet dinner each weeknight,

    My chest freezer uses 225kWh/yr, which is $67. If I had gone for the upright model of similar capacity, it was 400kWh/yr, or an EXTRA $50/year just to have the door on the front. In other words, my freezer is eating three or four 5-packs of film in electricity each year; I don't want to feed it six!

    Now factor in the 15% per annum growth in electricity prices.
     
  15. Photo-gear

    Photo-gear Member

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    I bought a regular fridge. It has a small freezer and three shelves in the fridge itself + space to store in the door. The fridge isn't a first-class one but it does the job, so far. I made up my mind as to buy one for color films and also for B&W 100 ft rolls.

    I have no idea of its energy efficiency. Probably not that performant... :wink:
     
  16. Slixtiesix

    Slixtiesix Subscriber

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    Its true that chest freezers generally are more efficient because the cold air cannot flow out. On the other hand, how often will you open that fridge? A normal freezer in the kitchen is sometimes opened 10 times a day. How often will you take some film out? Once a day or even once every few days? I don´t think that it will make that much difference then. I would make the choice dependent on energy class and available space in your basement mainly. You should also mind that a freezer works most effectively when full, so filling the remaining space with food is a good idea.
     
  17. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

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    Vertical upright, 14 cu ft, manual defrost, lives in the garage. Only bottom basket drawer has food, the rest is film and paper.

    It needs defrosting about once every 2 years for the amount I actually open it during periods of high humidity.

    I usually defrost in late November, when everything can sit out and stay frozen or quite cold, if not totally frozen on the floor of the garage.

    I stick a hair dryer in the deliberately unpluged unit on a top shelf, and pull the ice and mop the water up 20 minutes later, and have everything back in place in less than an hour.

    Replaced an old chest freezer that I hated to excave through to find stuff.

    The new one was more energy efficient, althogh a new chest freezer was still more efficient.

    One episode of a power failure leaving a puddle of melted condensed frost subsequently refrozen to cause boxes stuck to the bottom made the vertical choice easy when picking a replacement.