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Thread: Old B&W photo paper - question

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    Old B&W photo paper - question

    I think I already know the answer to this question, but does anyone know if Photo paper that is 25+ years old might still be good. It's various types of Ilford Multigrade type paper.

    It's been stored in its original Light tight packing and boxes and kept in a cardboard box at the back of a closet. I'm cleaning house and don't know if it's worth offering to anyone or if I should just throw it out.

    Wendy

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    PopsPhotos's Avatar
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    Re: Old B&W photo paper - question

    It depends entirely on how many extreme temperature changes to which it has undergone. I would not throw it out, because a person who might use it would be out only a little time to test a few sheets from each package.

    Do you have somebody in mind or would you have to look for a recipient? If you don't have anyone in hand (so to speak) you might try your local high school, community college or college/university.

    There was just recently some stir on the net about a roll of film which was developed some 30(?) years after exposure. An acquaintance of mine took film in for developing after it had sat in the closet for 14 years. It had spent some extended time in a very humid environment. The first 3 or 4 exposures on each roll were bad, but the rest of each roll came out just fine.

    Pops

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    Re: Old B&W photo paper - question

    Thanks Pops: Sounds like there might be some hope for it. It has not been through extreme temp changes. Good idea about the college or high school. I will check that out. I have an enlarger and a few other odds and ends leftover that I doubt I will ever use again. I'd rather the college or some other local group have it than try to sell it to someone who basically wants it for a steal.

    Wish I had done more research into the film situation. I had a couple rolls of undeveloped film that I threw away awhile ago (it was in my fridge for - hmmmm I don't know 8 - 10 years). I was making regular jaunts to a new research park that was being developed and had some good shots starting from the cornfield that it used to be to the start of construction and then the first buildings. I remember taking them all from the same location with the same tree in the foreground as a landmark.
    Sadly the film is gone now, I wish I could get it back.

    Wendy

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    PopsPhotos's Avatar
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    Re: Old B&W photo paper - question

    That is always sad. I remember throwing away some film when I returned from Europe in 1962, because I had taken the shots before I graduated from high school. I learned later that they would have probably been OK, but they were gone.

    When I was in high school during the late 50s, we were using 4x5 film and 8x10 paper (B&W) made for the Army in the early 40s. The stuff was fine, having been stored under controlled conditions all that time. Bill Belknap talked about using film in 1945 which he found in Berlin. The film was dated from the late 20s and worked fine. Had I been paying attention, I wouldn't have thrown away my 5 year-old film. Sometimes an eight year-old learns stuff he doesn't remember until 20 or 30 years later.

    Pops
    Last edited by PopsPhotos; 27th January 2010 at 05:50 PM.

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