when does film expire?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by hazzayoungn, Dec 29, 2006.

  1. hazzayoungn

    hazzayoungn TPF Noob!

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    i found a bunch of film at home, and i was wondering how quickly does film expire? id love to use it and stuff, but im worried everythings going to come out weird

    also, what effect does moisture have on film and camera equipment in general?

    thanks
     
  2. neea

    neea TPF Noob!

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    They should say. At least if they're in boxes the boxes will say for sure. I'd say.. a couple years if kept in proper conditions.
    As for moisture... ah I cant say for sure but I imagine it could be bad depending on the amount
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    You can keep your film in the fridge or even the freezer, it will prolong it's life...just let it warm up slowly, before you use it.
     
  4. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Like Mike said, freeze it until you need it. Freezing film stops all the chemical processes of the film, giving it theoretically infinite life. I've shot film that was frozen for 5 or 6 years, and it was like new. Pro photogs (who still shoot film :p) will often buy cases of a particular batch of film they enjoy, and keep it frozen, using it for years.

    Give it a good 24hrs to thaw before using, but if you have to, 1-2 hours in your pants pocket will do. If you stick it in the camera while it's still semi frozen, you might damage the film, or condensation might form, which will give you uneven exposure over the film.

    Moisture can get into your lenses and mold can grow in it. If you are using a camera outside in cold weather, it's best to put it in an airtight plastic bag before bringing it back into the house. This way, the warm air inside will condesnse on the bag and keep your equipment dry. Once the equipment has warmed to room temp, you can remove it.
     
  5. ball

    ball TPF Noob!

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    I recently had some prints turn out with purple people and the consensus seemed to be that this may have been caused by old colour print film. Is there any particular trick to freezing it, or just put it in a baggy (or box?) and then put it straight into the deep freeze?
     
  6. Torus34

    Torus34 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Put the film in 'Zip lock' (TM) bags, press out most of the air, and freeze.
     
  7. ball

    ball TPF Noob!

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    Thanks.
     
  8. hazzayoungn

    hazzayoungn TPF Noob!

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    hmm, maybe i should give up on them, i think theyre about 6 years old kept at room temperature. they dont have boxes and theres no expiration date on them

    ill keep the infinte lifespan thing in mind though

    thanks a bunch :mrgreen:

    as a sidenote though

    does anybody have any comments on brands of film?
     
  9. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    You'll get as many comments on film brands as you get replies. ;) If you want to stick to the tried & true, it's hard to go wrong with Ilford or Kodak for print film, and I personally like Fuji the best for slide film. Film speed choice is up to you, depending on what and where you're shooting.

    Check out this series in our Articles Forum for some specific information about film speeds, and other good info. :D
     
  10. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    I closed my studio and walked away several years ago. There were boxes of film there that froze and burned for about six years. I am using it now right off the shelf and it has all been fine even though it is long out of date.
     
  11. markc

    markc TPF Noob!

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    Film in the freezer will still be exposed by natural background radiation such as gamma rays, but that's so minuscule that it will usually take decades to have an effect. High-speed film will be effected quicker than slow films though, just like with light, so don't expect a roll of 3200 ISO to be untouched after a decade, but you youngins might be able to save a brick of ISO 25 for your grandkids.
     
  12. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    Always let frozen or cold film come to room temp in its original sealed container. A cold surface in a humid environment will attract condensation
     

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