How long does film last once exposed?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Meysha, May 22, 2005.

  1. Meysha

    Meysha still being picky Vicky

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    I have a roll of film that's not quite finished yet but it's been sitting in a camera for about 6-8 years I'd guess. :shock:
    I thought it might be interesting to get it developed and go back in time.

    Is there any chance that the film is salvageable?
    What's the longest you've waited between exposing and developing the film?
     
  2. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Depends on the conditions that the film has been kept in. Films - whether exposed or unexposed - degrade in quality over time. Contrast and film speed are reduced and base level fog increases. These effects happen much more quickly if excessive heat. Excessive moisture can cause the gelatine to swell and actually stick the film together - and mold and fungus can grow too.
    I have known films of more than 25 years to be successfully developed - though quality wasn't brilliant (wasn't too bad, though).
    The only thing you can do to find out is to process. Maybe give it a little extra dev time.
     
  3. Meysha

    Meysha still being picky Vicky

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    What do you mean by give it a little extra dev time?

    I was just gonna drop it off at Kmart coz I know it's just gonna crap happy snaps around the house so it's no big deal if they don't turn out. I mean I've survived this long without them :)
     
  4. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Never mind - if you were deving it yourself an increase of 1 or 2% on the processing time would compensate for speed and contrast loss - especially B&W. But if you are getting a lab to dev them then I wouldn't worry.
     
  5. kfoster

    kfoster TPF Noob!

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    I had 11 rolls of 35mm film that had been exposed 7 years ago. They sat in a one of those storage places for 2 years in Northern Indiana. So they saw hot humid temperature as well as freezing cold. I took them to a local Meijer store (sort of like a super Walmart). I had them 1 hour developed. I told them how old the film was. Most of the film was Walgreens store brand. I ended up with some pretty good photos.

    I did have some polaroid brand film in this same mix. I took it to a local pro lab to have it done. I told them how old it was. All of these pictures turned out CRAP. The grain is the size of BB''s.

    I'm not sure if it was the lab or the brand of film. But all the film was exposed around the same time, and it all was stored together.

    Even though you may not get great quality pictures you may end up with something you forgot you had taken. One of the rolls I developed was of my sons 2nd birthday party. To me these pictures are priceless even if the quality isn't that good.

    K
     
  6. AIRIC

    AIRIC TPF Noob!

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    It is always worth getting it developed. If nothing is printable you will not have to pay.

    Eric
     

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