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Expired film?
Old 02-12-2004, 03:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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First post, visited GG a few years ago before there was a forum, hope to pick up a lot of tips and tricks from members here.

I am a student at Cal State Fullerton and the photo projects are getting expensive. I recently purchased 20 rolls of Fuji Astia with a expiration date of 12/05. The seller also had some recently expired film at a much lower cost. I was wondering, what can I expect with expired film? Low saturation? Less light sensitivity?

 
 
Re: Expired film?
Old 02-12-2004, 03:47 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I had a friend years ago that swore by expired film. He would buy lots of it on the cheap and stick it in his freezer. He always took great pictures and had lots of stuff published. Not glamour, he didn't do that.

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Re: Expired film?
Old 02-12-2004, 04:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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It depends on the film and how it's been stored. If it's been in the freezer chrome or color neg will be good almost forever; in the refrigerator, it should be fine for a couple of years after the expiry date, at least, maybe even longer. B&W film lasts a long time in normal room conditions, essentially forever in the cold. If the film's only just past its expiry date, it should be fine, at least worth investing in a test roll or two. Film emulsions aren't that volatile, and don't turn sour right away.

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Re: Expired film?
Old 02-12-2004, 04:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thats good to hear, 20 rolls of Fuji Astia for $40 will save me a lot of money throughout the semester.

Thanks for the quick replies
 
 
Re: Expired film?
Old 02-12-2004, 07:08 PM   #5 (permalink)
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A guy on Photo.net last year discovered a lost roll of film stuck in one of the seats in his car. He figured the film had to be almost two years old. But he got it processed anyway to see what was it. After seeing the result he recalled the day he shot with that roll. He posted a shot of a flower that was amazingly dreamy in appearance and commented that there was no photoshopping done and that in real life the flower looked nothing like the photo portrayed it. It was a very cool shot!

Too bad you can't predict with certainty what will happen with expired film or what a result will be if you just don't process it for a while.
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Re: Expired film?
Old 02-12-2004, 11:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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actually most my stuff as shot with expired film i just finished school, and i often faced the same lack of money issue aas every other photo student. keep it vold and it shall be fine. i still buy expired film if it was well kept.
 
 
Re: Expired film?
Old 02-13-2004, 04:22 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Would guess that aside from how the film was stored to begin with, just how expired the film is would be a factor. There's got to be some amount of fluff as to the deterioration/ time for variables. If you subtracted the date of manufacture from the expiration date, you should have the self life. I would imagine that there would be something like a 25% of the self life fluff period to account for variables. I have no references on this, so you could say I'm blowing out my ass, but this seems common practice with perishable materials.
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Re: Expired film?
Old 02-13-2004, 08:21 AM   #8 (permalink)
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actully i read on zuga that alot of wedding portrait shooters are buying gray market film...thay did side by side tests..and by the time you figure all the shipping ( 100+ degree ups trucks) , storage methods ( between factore and seller ) ect ...its almost no difference
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Re: Expired film?
Old 02-13-2004, 08:52 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Imprecise color balance.

Expired film is generally a good bargain if you're not matching the film to anything else that's been shot and it doesn't have to match your densitometer tests. For student and personal work (and, though many will poo-poo me, some professional work as well) it's really fine. If it's TOOOO long ago expired you might have some minor fogging which will reduce your contrast. That's not good. If it's recently expired and was generally well-stored (they didn't keep in in the window) you'll be just fine.
 
 
Re: Expired film?
Old 02-13-2004, 08:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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That's MUCH more likely a result of failing to process your film in a timely manner. That's pretty much the result of that, an overall fogging and silver halide chrystals near those which received exposure becoming exposed when in contact with exposed halides adjacent to them. In other words, the original light exposure kinda slowly spreads all throughout the emulsion...

It's good that the manufacturers give us the consumer protection of dating their film so in color critical use (as in repro work) you can be certain of the precise colors you're going to get with repeatable results (when shot under controlled conditions of course) but for most work it's really overkill.

Photography is technical, but it's not as technical as many believe it is. Controlling your light and exposure and development (the stuff that's in your control) will get you much closer to your desired result than a film with a precisely tuned color balance will.
 
 
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