film 35mm and 120
film 35mm and 120

film 35mm and 120

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Agfa Rondinax 60
Agfa Rondinax 60

Agfa Rondinax 60 daylight developing tank

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Squeezing the film strips
Squeezing the film strips

35mm film strips drying

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film 35mm and 120
film 35mm and 120

film 35mm and 120

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Proper storage for unexposed and exposed film - 35mm and 120 medium format

This question is often asked but rarely gets definitive answers Now with the help of Kodak  we can provide reliable answers. Our own experience confirms Kodak's technical advice.

The main considerations for film storage are –

Time from purchase to use, then to processing. Storage temperature and humidity. The humidity factor is especially hard to control as too high will promote mould growth and too low can cause the film to buckle – a very difficult problem occurring during processing. It is not recommended to store exposed film longer than 6 months.

Generally, purchase your film, shoot it promptly then process with moderate urgency. This way all adverse storage issues are mainly avoided. This is the ideal but there are always many reasons why we have to store film – unexposed and exposed. So; prompt useage has no need for cold storage except in ultra humid (tropical conditions). For moderate term storage the refrigerator at around 6C is ideal. For longer term storage you can freeze your film. But, what is most important is allowing refrigerated or frozen film to come to ambient temperature before camera loading or processing. This step is very important as if an attempt is made to load or process film straight from storage the film will be brittle and condensation formed as the film warms can make the film sticky which will impede camera loading and can introduce moisture to the camera interior. On the processing side condensation on the film may make proper loading onto processing reels impossible. This situation is irretrievable.

Give your refrigerated film (unexposed and exposed) at least 3 hours to rise to ambient and frozen film at least 5 hours.

When you have succesfully developed your film/s and are holding your transparencies in your gloved hand what about longer term storage of these. We use Print File Archival Preservers, available for all film sizes and then store away from light in a cool dry place. Properly stored these will last for decades, easily outlasting corruptable digital.