What is the best storage for cartridges?

If you ended up with some cartridges and you do exchange carts on your tonearms what is the most appropriate kind of storage for your carts not used at the time being?
If the cartridge has any rubber suspension parts or other compliant materials you must guard against the material from drying out. I have heard of one audiophile who keeps his spare cartridges in a humidor.
Right next to the cuban cigars BRF ? Great question Thuchan.

My NOS Empire 4000 DIII Gold was in storage for 30 years. It sounded great from hour one on the TT ? Go figure. But there was no more fluid in the bottle that it came with.
The humidor is a proper and cost effective device for the storage of multiple cartridges. Many can be found for under $25.00 US. Maintain 45% humidity. It is easy to use plastic dividers like they use for fishing lures and tackle. Hope this helps.
Humidor is the one and only choice.
Looks nice too and there is a wide selection of styles, decor and design.
For me and my twenty odd cartridge/headshell collection, the rare and beautiful Fidelity Research K5 cartridge cases are the only way to go.
And if you're very very lucky.........you may even find the rarest K10 cartridge case? :^)
Dear all,
many thanks for these helpful hints! Humidor - yes. booked!
what about light? carts seem to like dark places, do you agree?

best & fun only
Natural lght (heat) just accelerates the drying out process.
Is a humidor really the best storage vessel? I would opt for something completely airtight. The most obvious enemy of a cartridge is airborne pollutants, such as ozone. Ozone attacks the rubber components of the cartridge suspension making them brittle.
I would recommend a sealed container with desiccant packs. My concern here is that humidity leads to oxidation (rust). I would absolutely recommend avoiding anything petroleum based, as the vapors will quickly denature rubber compounds. For example-anyone ever see what happens to a turntable mat that has been trapped under the dustcover of an oil or grease lubricated turntable? In the presence of petroleum vapors, the rubber quickly becomes rigid and cracks.
I would recommend a jewelry box with desiccant packs. And don't add foam, that gives of vapors too. If you can't locate desiccant packs, make nice with your local Pharmacist, we throw millions of them away every time we open a new bottle of pills. You'll have to "dry them out" first however, which is nothing more than baking them in an oven for a short while.
Agree with Larryi. Oxidation seems like greater risk for permanent damage than "drying out".

I'm thinking a chamber filled with nitrogen might be best.
Dear all,
I learn there are two camps, one voting for humidity ( around 45 % ) and the other for keeping cartridge under an airtight condition. what effects does nitrogen have on carts?

best & fun only
I can only guess, but, nitrogen is a non-reactive gas, so it should be good for preserving cartridges. I think airtight should be good enough. The problem with exposure to the air comes from constantly introducing new reactive compounds (principally oxidants).
Are talking about short term storage when the cartridge is out of rotation OR archiving and preserving a cartridge over a LONG period of time?
Brf - depends on the number of carts you are using. In my case with about 40 carts using on 12 arms installed on five TTs I sometimes change carts frequently and sometimes not. So we may talk about a storage box on the long run, maybe for up to 30 carts.

best & fun only
I decided to build a storage case which can be used as a humidor optional. will show the final result in about two weeks. Thanks again for all the valuable hints. Stay tuned

best @ fun only
today the Bavarian Humdior has seen the light.
I put two images on my page. the humdor is the small unit below...

best & fun only
Nice job!!!
That's a lot of cartridges. I can see why you were concerned about storage. Nice solution.
There is a nice little cartridge holder that is put up for sale on this site every so often that hold 5 cartridges in standard headshells. Its a little pricey, but works, and keeps them safe if you have lost the stylus protector. And the cartridges are already mounted in the headshell for quick changes.
Many thanks to you all for inspiration

the small unit below is the humidor, electronically controlled, filled with distilled water in a sponge.
In the upper part you see the temperature and the humidity – now 53% (it needs time in the beginning). Goes up to 75%.
In front of the single platforms and also in the rear side there is space for the air moving around…
The humidor makes sounds if something is wrong etc.

The door mechanism keeps a firm closing against the rubber blinding.
The carts are stuck in specially constructed aluminum inlays, being able to be moved around in the matching holes.

best @ fun only
Now I can die a happy man. You would think that someone who owns 40 carts, 12 arms, and 5 tables would have solved this issue long ago. Or was that really the point of all this? ;-)
Dear Thuchan: With all respect I can see that you don't know what to do with your time and money, good looks nice.

I can tell you that several of those cartridges already survived for more than 30+ years ( as mines. ) with out no humidor at all!!

Regards and enjoy the music,

You have not included the 12 carts on the arms.
So the question is a completely different one... :-)

Best @ Fun Only
LOL! We have a saying in the U.S., down south. "Well, bless your heart!" :-)
... and that single phrase can be universally translated to mean just about anything.
Not really. :-)
Dear Raul,
You are spoiled with humidity in your region - no need for you in your lovely Fiesta garden restaurant when you are D'jay...

Maybe it is not the humidor itself, you can take it out but the storage and handling is just easy - and no light at all for the good pieces. Not the money counts, ideas and practicability...

Best @ Fiesta Only
My learnings on storing cartridges are:

- controlled and stable conditions
- difference on conditions between listening room and humidor should be not to large
- humidity 40-45% max. - prevents corrosion
- light protection
- UV- protection
- temperature 15 - 20°

best @ fun only