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There are internally threaded, externally threaded, natural caps. For the vials, there are skirts, star-footed, and various bottoms. Why do any of these things matter?

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I routinely store my stocks in plain vanilla 1.5ml eppendorfs and see no issues with it. I would be curious also to know what/why these special vials are "special" –  gkadam Feb 27 '12 at 20:35
    
Hence the question. Do companies just charge us more to make us think that they are "necessary"? –  bobthejoe Feb 27 '12 at 22:38
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For any kind of frozen cell stock (for cell culture or bacteria) we routinely use freezing vials similar to these: http://www.sigmaaldrich.com/catalog/ProductDetail.do?D7=0&N5=SEARCH_CONCAT_PNO%7CBRAND_KEY&N4=V9255%7CSIGMA&N25=0&QS=ON&F=SPEC

These tubes are internally threaded with a rubber grommet to seal the lid and make the tube air and water tight. I suspect the air tight seal prevents condensation from entering the tube and freezing within the tube, but I've never had a problem with either choice of tube.

The tubes don't really matter at -80 C for a glycerol stab. Freezing cells in liquid nitrogen on the other hand has a huge impact when storing in liquid nitrogen. Some tubes are meant to be stored in the liquid versus the vapour phase of nitrogen and not matching the tube to it's intended storage condition can result in explosion of the tube.

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