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Thread: How long can film be kept?

  1. #1

    Question How long can film be kept?

    My friend's gone to the US on an exchange programme & plans to develop the films only when she gets back [at least 6 months later]

    will this damage or affect the photos?

  2. #2
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    It depends whether your friend is particular.

    Most of the time what suffers is the colour. Esp. if kept in a warm place.

    If she MUST do that, tell her to put it back in the cartridge and in the fridge.

    I've stored undeveloped B&W film in the fridge for as long as 6 years after shooting, before developing. This was part of a "time capsule" thing for me where every year or two I would take photos of my surroundings, people I knew , and then deliberately store it away without developing. So that when I opened it years later, I'd surprise myself Two rolls developed, a few more due to be opened soon.

    Unopened film stored at slightly chilled can last years. I still use Ektar 25 that I bought when it was discontinued. The expiry date is 1996.

    It's still my preferred film and I keep it for special occasions, like landscapes

  3. #3

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    Originally posted by Keltzar

    I've stored undeveloped B&W film in the fridge for as long as 6 years after shooting, before developing. This was part of a "time capsule" thing for me where every year or two I would take photos of my surroundings, people I knew , and then deliberately store it away without developing. So that when I opened it years later, I'd surprise myself Two rolls developed, a few more due to be opened soon.
    That's interesting.

  4. #4

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    every year or two I would take photos of my surroundings
    Hi Keltzar

    does that mean that you used the same roll of film over a no. of years?

    would like to know how to do that --> If I take 5 shots and then wind up the film mid-roll, when I want to continue with that roll, how do I get past the first 5shots?

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    Originally posted by Juvelyn


    Hi Keltzar

    does that mean that you used the same roll of film over a no. of years?

    would like to know how to do that --> If I take 5 shots and then wind up the film mid-roll, when I want to continue with that roll, how do I get past the first 5shots?
    Set to MF, close lens cap, set to your highest shutter speed, minimum aperture (e.g. f/22) then shoot till it reach frame #6.

    Regards
    CK

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    Default Re: How long can film be kept?

    Originally posted by Juvelyn
    My friend's gone to the US on an exchange programme & plans to develop the films only when she gets back [at least 6 months later]

    will this damage or affect the photos?
    As per CK's advice, stick it in the fridge or freezer once it's shot.

    However, there's a far worse gremlin in the works for her to deal with

    The new X-ray units being fitted in major US airports (and elsewhere round the world) in light of American paranoia post 9/11 are capable of wreaking havoc on any film. Thankfully these new very high powered X-ray units aren't in common use yet, but they are coming and quite a few countries have already installed them in their major mail hubs.

    In light of this your friend would be far better off to get the film developed, but not printed while in the USA as X-rays have no effect on processed film.
    The Ang Moh from Hell
    Professional Photography - many are called, few are chosen!

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    Default Re: How long can film be kept?

    Originally posted by Juvelyn
    My friend's gone to the US on an exchange programme & plans to develop the films only when she gets back [at least 6 months later]

    will this damage or affect the photos?
    From my experience, the photos will appear "weaker" than fresh ones. Also, I noticed that for some types of film, the negatives/photos tend to get more grainy after keeping it for too long. And I think the X-ray machines at airports may affect the undeveloped film, to some extent. This I cannot confirm as I have not tried it before. Why wait so long to develop the film? If she is going to save some money by developing in Singapore, I feel that she should just do it in US. Not much price difference I would say.

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