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Any ideas on how to store gels?


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How do you store your gels?

I spent some time searching and came up with nil here on the forums.


The reason I am asking is because I am going from set to set, seeing various gels and filters being thrown in a tall trashbin or tub or something of the like, lacking any organization and efficiency. I am still fairly inexperienced and low-budget, and don't have means of a storage facility nor the luxury of storing them on frames. I'm beginning to grow my collection, from smaller rolled up 4x4 sheets to actual full rolls, and as they are fairly expensive, yet still expendable, I can't come up with a reasonable way to store them, thought I have many ideas. Maybe you guys can help me get a better idea or a good recommendation of what to do.


One idea that I have had is to actually have a large PVC tube, and strap full rolls inside and lock them with a twisted cap, and roll smaller sheets on the outside and fix them to the tube with a mixture of a PVC sheet or bit of tarp covering them, and a bongo-tie securing system. Labeling will be a breeze, and visually finding them will be a lot easier. I imagine this could be nice and safe for the gels and filters, yet if I have too many of these, the weight will become ridiculous.


Any tips and ideas are appreciated, thanks!

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Generally cut pieces are labeled with a sharpie. I usually see them in little rolls stuffed vertically in an egg crate on sets. Partial rolls and full rolls might be stored in taller cardboard boxes and then moved to the rolling carts on sets. For storage at home, putting them into large cardboard poster tubes isn't a bad idea. My small collection of scraps is just rolled up into little rolls and stuffed into a reusable shopping bag. I've also seen gels stored flat in a cardboard folder.

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In the theatrical world we use filing cabinets and folders or large flat drawers. But they typically use a lot more variations of gel and generally smaller cuts. You might look into something like a portfolio tube for drafting. They are usually water tight and have a strap with lots of room inside.

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I've used a Gelly Roll for the sizes up to 20x24. Something like this: http://www.samys.com/p/Color-Filter--Diffusion-Sheets--Rolls/GL2G/Gelly-Roll-Gel-Storage-and-Protection,-20-x-24,-Gray/7804.html


I keep cardboard poster tubes in my office for sheets. I have a tube for CTOs, one for CTBs, one for diffusions, and one for random other stuff. I've seen some nice handmade boxes for holding 48" rolls vertical. If you build a little eggcrate-style divider on the top, it gets a little easier to manage them. I've seen people build racks to hold rolls horizontal, but they end up taking a huge amount of space unless you have 100+ different rolls.

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