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Should you store backup cds in the freezer?

Old 06-18-02, 09:23 AM
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Should you store backup cds in the freezer?

Someone recently told me that I should store my backup cds in the freezer, and that they would be safe there if there was a fire or something. Is this true? Or would they somehow get hurt by being in the freezer for a long time? I figure cds sit around in cars in the winter and get to freezer temperatures all the time, so it seems it would be safe, but I've not heard of anyone else doing this.
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Old 06-18-02, 10:35 AM
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Sorry, I've never heard that suggested before. The SAFEST bet would be to store them outside your house somewhere (like a safe deposit box, etc.) But, one of the easy ways is to purchase a fireproof safe type thing from Staples or something.


SENTRY Fire-Safe® Insulated Security Chest.


I would think the condensation from the freezer going on and off could ruin the CD over time. The thinking on this is probably that a fire wouldn't harm anything in the freezer because everything in there is frozen, but I think the freezer would heat up and everything would melt and your CDs would be sitting in a puddle of frozen goop.
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Old 06-18-02, 10:51 AM
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ice crystals in the cd grooves CANT be a good thing. "but theres no water on my CDs" you say condensation from the air will create the moisture needed. frozen CDs are also brittle. Store them somewhere dry at room temperature.
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Old 06-18-02, 10:58 AM
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Those fire safes get to 350 degrees inside. I suspect that would melt a cd or any other sort of backup. Maybe the simple solution is to keep all my home backups at work.
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Old 06-18-02, 11:26 AM
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I think just keeping them cool and away from light is about the best thing for them.
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Old 06-18-02, 11:38 AM
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Ive heard of people keeping money, savings bonds, jewelry, etc.. in the freezer.. in case of fire

but I dont think I would put my important cds in there
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Old 06-18-02, 11:50 AM
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Originally posted by datagirl7
Those fire safes get to 350 degrees inside. I suspect that would melt a cd or any other sort of backup. Maybe the simple solution is to keep all my home backups at work.
My only worry about keeping it at work is someone going through my stuff and reading the cd's and my personal stuff...

Remember just 'cause you have a lock on your desk doesn't mean that someone in your office doesn't have a master key! In my office the facilities guy has a spare copy of each key for the desk locks...

I know those fire saves get hot inside... Actually there was an article in an old magazine that I don't think is even around anymore called BOOT. Here's a link to the company that makes the safe they reviewed. And the way they reviewed it, was to test it. They put all sorts of PC Media into it, put it in a fire cabinet, put the cabinet ontop of wood logs, doused it in Gasoline, and lit it ablaze! Took the fire department to put it out!
http://www.firecooler.com/article.html

Everything inside survived, however the outside of the cooler melted!
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Old 06-18-02, 11:51 AM
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Jewelry would be wierd to put in a freezer. I know diamonds are fragile. Yes they are 'hard' but theyre brittle and if you put a match to a diamond they are quite flamable, they are compressed 'coal' after all. If a diamond got frozen i wonder if it would crack or develop flaws/discoloration? Dont forget things expand when they freeze.
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Old 06-18-02, 12:11 PM
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Actually most things contract when cooled. With water being the notable exception to that rule - lucky for all those fish in ponds. But contraction is still not necessarily good for jewelry and cds.

I guess I'll store backups in a fire safe and hope they don't melt. Or maybe at a friends house. No particulalry good solution. But it is true that others could go through my stuff if I take it to work. NOt likely, but could happen for sure.
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Old 06-18-02, 12:13 PM
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Originally posted by Save Ferris
Jewelry would be wierd to put in a freezer. I know diamonds are fragile. Yes they are 'hard' but theyre brittle and if you put a match to a diamond they are quite flamable, they are compressed 'coal' after all. If a diamond got frozen i wonder if it would crack or develop flaws/discoloration? Dont forget things expand when they freeze.
Diamonds won't burn under normal circumstances (disclaimer added). Their combustion point is over 1400 degrees Farenheit so you'd need a pretty intense fire, not just a match. I've soldered with a torch right next to them and they didn't combust. But then anything can "burn" at a hot enough temperature.

Under less intense heat they can get their surface marred or "burned" when something flammable is next to it during that heating. That they are made of carbon is their only similarity to coal. The crystalline structure is very different. Otherwise you'd be able to see through coal.

A diamond won't freeze and crack or discolor. And they aren't that brittle either. You can break a diamond with a good whack, that's sometimes how they're cut. And you can shatter them when intended with an even harder, more direct whack. You can also break them by intensely heating them up and then dipping them right into water before cooling down. But they don't just go shattering under everyday use.

Other than those facts (I worked with diamonds for many years) I agree with you.
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Old 06-18-02, 12:16 PM
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Slight hijack becasue I remembered something about the diamonds burning when Save Ferris mentioned it, and found it at: http://newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/chem00/chem00202.htm

"Indeed, diamonds do burn. However, since they're pure carbon, and in the burning process are converted to carbon dioxide (only), there is no ash residue whatever.

Had an interesting thing occur once when a home burned down and a rather "costly" jewelry piece was lost. It turned out that what was thought to be a diamond was found amid the melted gold remains of the setting. The stone was completely intact and undamaged. It was later discovered to be a cubic zirconia (fake diamond) that would not burn. The fellow's wife was not impressed that her husband would have fooled her into thinking
he had spent big money on a diamond when he had actually bought her a vastly less expensive cubic zirconia."
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