View Full Version : Super 8mm film
25-01-2005, 04:00 PM
Hi, I don't know if this question belongs here as it concerns home movies rather than still photography, but anyway, here goes... would undeveloped (but used) 8mm film stock keep for, say, 15 years or more? I found a bunch of old super 8 film cartridges and am curious as to what's on them, but I don't know if it would be worth getting them (or maybe at least one of them) developed if the image(s) would have been destroyed by such a long time (stored in a hot location I think). Nor would I know where to get them developed anymore. Hmm.
If we go by the still film. They don't even last more than a couple of years for unexposed films. Than again, I think the images are not erased after a long period, just getting worse overtime. 15 years is a long time, if the storage temperature is high, then it is possible you won't get much out of it. In case you want to get the best of the "may be useful films", there are some tips of storage from: http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/compose_expose/film3.html
To keep your film in good condition it is you have to store it properly. Over time or if subjected to extremes of temperature etc. film will go off. Contrast will deteriorate and colours will go a bit strange. Luckily for you modern film is actually pretty robust stuff and you can often get away with treating it quite badly though it won't do any harm to treat it properly.
Proper storage of film is not difficult to organise.
Store your film in a cool dry place in its original container.
Below 13 C if possible. (In the fridge)
Keep it away from things with strong smells. i.e. don't keep it with the onions and garlic.
Do not subject film to high temperatures. Avoid keeping film in places which may become very hot such as the glove box in a car or on a window ledge in the sun.
Store away from bright lights or direct sunlight.
You can, if you want to, freeze your film to extend its shelf life.
Before use allow film to reach the ambient temperature before you open the container. Do not open the container while film is frozen or cold as condensation will form on the film surface. Allow it to warm up naturally, an hour or so if it was in the fridge, several if it was frozen. Don't be a butt head and try to defrost the stuff in the microwave.
16-02-2005, 11:54 AM
a friend of mine found some very old undeveloped super 8 film lying around recently and got it developed and it was still ok - it had deteriorated a bit but its not all that noticable considering super 8 has a scratchy faded look about it anyway. its not all that easy to get processed these days though - he had to send it away for a few weeks.
I don't know specifically about super 8, but film fogs over time, but how long it takes depends on the emulsion.
I think you should think about it this way:
There's a slice of history stored on that film.
If you don't get it developed, you'll never see what's on it.
If you do get it developed, there's a chance that you will see what's on it.
If it's completely fogged, you've spent a bit of money but at least you'll know that you'll never see what's on it.
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