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  Photography Forum: Medium Format Photography Forum: 
  Q. Outdated Film

Asked by Nathaniel Siegel    (K=55) on 2/3/2009 
I have bounced between film and digital and want to spend more time with 120 and 35 mm film...particularly B&W, 120. I have a lot of outdated film, i.e., 5 yrs past date, stored in a basement darkroom. I have never used outdated film but some people obviously do. Am I best off forgetting about it or are there some advantages (other than economic ones) to using it?


 Stephen Lentz   (K=46) - Comment Date 2/4/2009
In my opinion, it depends on what you want to do. If you are on a really special trip and are after perfect, predictable results, then invest in fresh film; perhaps Ilford Pan F plus or Rollei R3, after all, it's really not very expensive.

Use your outdated stuff for messing around and experimenting; it is probably fine, assuming that it's been kept cool... in my experience, film storage time is much more important after exposure...

BTW, personally, I wouldn't mess with 35mm anymore, 120 equipment is so inexpensive these days and the results are far superior

Cheers and good luck


 Jeroen Wenting  Donor  (K=25317) - Comment Date 2/7/2009
It also depends on the film.
Silver halide based black and white is less likely to show signs of decay than does colour film (which often starts to show discoloration, purple haze, etc. a year or so after the list date).

 Nathaniel Siegel   (K=55) - Comment Date 2/15/2009
Thanks; too many things to worry about with outdated into the trash it goes...and I will get some fresh stuff.

 Kurt Driver   (K=65) - Comment Date 6/7/2009
"often starts to show discoloration, purple haze"
It may be, Nathan, that you're looking for a purple haze effect. Kurt

Rashed Abdulla
 Rashed Abdulla  Donor  (K=163889) - Comment Date 6/7/2009
It is still exceptable as long as you do processing of your film, give the first Dev. one mint extra, I sitll work with 120 films which are more than a year expired.

Of course for me those 120 film are now rare to buy here, they not been ordered by the shops any more as no much people are using films.

 Tareq Alhamrani   (K=25) - Comment Date 12/12/2009
When i was in USA i bought plenty of films, and all are new fresh except one roll of film that one salesman gave it to me free because it is expired, and unfortunately it is also 220, now if i have all new 120 film and i have only one outdated expired 220 film, what i can do with it?
Still didn't shoot with film yet, so i am ready when i complete my film system then give it a shoot.

no longer a member
 no longer a member  Donor  (K=10557) - Comment Date 12/12/2009
I have shot some outdated film, some about two years expired with no problems. However, I have kept the film refrigerated until ready to use. Some photographers will place their film in the freezer to extend the life even further. As far as any benefits of shooting outdated film, I don't know of any other than being economical and having the type and amount of film when I need it.

no longer a member
 no longer a member  Donor  (K=10557) - Comment Date 12/13/2009
Tereq, for the Mamiya RZ67's you must have a 220 back to shoot 220 film. The RB67 series do have a back that can shoot either one. For me, I use 120 film for locally, and when I take a long trip I switch to 220, since I can get 20 exposures to one roll of film versus 10 with the 120.

 Tareq Alhamrani   (K=25) - Comment Date 12/13/2009
Hey Michael,
I will see if i should buy 220 film back for my RZ, also i don't know if my film back of Hasselblad [A12] can shoot 220, if not then i will buy any used 220 film for either RZ or 501CM and use that only 220 film roll i have.
Since i came back from USA, i keep all the film in the fridge, i don't know if i should put it in the freezer but i thought my in freezer it will be frozen and damage the film instead just a cold fridge.

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