Smena 8M Redscale Excellence!

2013-04-18 31

The quick and easy way to load your Smena 8m with redscale film, or any camera with a removable take up spool!

So, I was fiddling around with my Smena a few weeks back, and I decided that finally I would test out a theory… could I simply move the take up spool to the other side of the camera (where the film normally goes) and put the film in its place… therefore resulting in the back of the film facing the lens… aka REDSCALE!!!

And guess what!!! It works!

This tipster is super quick, super easy and EXCEEDINGLY satisfying.

What do you need? A Smena 8M, or any camera with a removable take up spool, a roll of 35mm, 1 piece of sticky tape… THAT’S IT!!!

Why bother fiddling around in the dark loading an empty spool or folding your film so it faces backwards??

Step 1: Simply remove the take up spool, put it in the section where the film usually goes.

Step 2: Put the film where the spool would normally go.

Step 3: Shut the camera door…

Step 4: Imagine you are rewinding the film, rewind until you feel you’ve got to the end of the film, basically all the film is now on the spool side… DON’T OPEN THE CAMERA!

Step 5: Take photos like normal, wind on the winder like normal, from now on everything is exactly the same as with a normal roll of film.

What to remember:

  1. It’s best to tape the film leader to the take up spool because it will be spinning around backwards…
  2. There will be increased resistance when you roll the film on, don’t worry, it’s normal.
  3. The film will be returning to the canister THE WRONG WAY AROUND, so you don’t want the film to go all the way back into the canister when it’s finished, otherwise you’ll never get it out again! The tape will help you know when you get to the end, and should prevent you from winding it all the way in, but this isn’t fool proof! Keep an eye on your counter!
  4. Don’t forget redscale film needs to be shot 2 iso levels down, so if you have 400 iso film you need to shoot at 100iso, if you have 200iso you need to shoot at 50iso!

This technique is great for shooting both sides, once you’ve done the red side, remove and put it all back in like normal and shoot the other way, when you’ve finished that round and rewind it will all be back in the canister the right way around!!!

The pictures here are all from my redscale technique, which I then film swapped with the fantastic @pixiecloud, who shot the normal side!


written by micky_s on 2013-04-18 #gear #tutorials #film #35mm #redscale #smena #shoot #tipster #8m #lomo #lomography #home-made #excellent #both-sides


  1. mylatehope
    mylatehope ·

    great idea, I will have to try this

  2. vonkrueger
    vonkrueger ·

    awesome tips!

  3. micky_s
    micky_s ·

    @mylatehope & @vonkrueger good luck! i was so happy with the results, and it saves so much time and messing about in the dark! redscale on the road! :D

  4. pedrogalvez
    pedrogalvez ·

    I will try!!

  5. adash
    adash ·


  6. alexyz
    alexyz ·


  7. neanderthalis
    neanderthalis ·

    So simple that I never realized this was possible. Thank you!

  8. pachuli2008
    pachuli2008 ·


  9. deckard578
    deckard578 ·

    I will try to do it and tell you how it goes! awesome tip :)

  10. kuleko
    kuleko ·

    Great article Micky, I´m gonna try this in my next roll. BTW nice photos, ¡Saludos!

  11. ginnys
    ginnys ·

    Thanks for sharing this!!! Really cool idea, love the results!!! I'll try it out too... ;-)

  12. sonya1980
    sonya1980 ·

    wow incredible tip!! I have to try it!!

  13. mafiosa
    mafiosa ·

    Great tipster and wonderful results. I didn't know that the Smena had that capability... I might have to get one now :)

  14. micky_s
    micky_s ·

    @mafiosa @sonya1980 @ginnys @kuleko @deckard578 @pachuli2008 @neanderthalis @alexyz @adash @pedrogalvez thanks for all the comments and likes! Good luck! I really look forward to seeing your results!! :)

  15. adam_g2000
    adam_g2000 ·

    Excellent idea!

  16. fransmena
    fransmena ·

    thank you micky, i am undoubtbly going to do this the next time i load my 8m (it's already loaded now) cheers!!

  17. sakanikov
    sakanikov ·

    Omg! Such a great idea! Now I got a freedom from messing about in the dark! Thank you so much;)

  18. andrus_n
    andrus_n ·

    such an easy thing, that even didn't cross my mind while loading my smena today - next time when. Thanks for the tipster!

  19. vitko94
    vitko94 ·

    awesome, will try this for sure!

  20. abangbear
    abangbear ·

    Why didn't i think of that?

  21. micky_s
    micky_s ·

    @abangbear @vitko94 @andrus_n @sakanikov @fransmena @adam_g2000 thanks for checking out my tipster! and good luck with it!!! :D GO SMENA GOOOO!!!!

  22. stonerfairy
    stonerfairy ·

    Your redscale is amazing!!

  23. akira2baki
    akira2baki ·

    Such a great idea!!!!! I want to try!!!!!

  24. akira2baki
    akira2baki ·

    A film was not able to be rolled well..........

  25. micky_s
    micky_s ·

    @akira2baki yes, there will be more resistance, as i said in point 2. but it is ok, it wont cause any problem...

  26. butcherboy
    butcherboy ·

    I have a Lomo Smena 8, and I will definitely be doing this. Now I don't have to do the other Redscale tips. Thanks! :-)

  27. micky_s
    micky_s ·

    @butcherboy good luck! it's really easy and satifying results! did you see my last album with the smena redscaled?

  28. butcherboy
    butcherboy ·

    Hi @micky_s, I finally tried the DIY redscale, I had trouble with forwarding the film as expected. I'm still waiting for my film to be developed, but I will definitely try it again. Thanks again for this tip, I knew there is more than 1 way to make DIY redscale! ! In the meantime, I'll check out your new smena redscale album :-)

  29. fotohelmut
    fotohelmut ·

    Super Tip - try it once, if it can be done with the Symbol!

  30. lomaugustry
    lomaugustry ·

    hmm i don't see how this could work in any of my cameras.

  31. micky_s
    micky_s ·

    @lomaugustry do you have a smena 8m? If not then it probably won't... but if you do then it will!

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