Stubborn Diana Mini Won't Wind? Don't Fight It!

16

The most common complaint when it comes to the Diana Mini is that it won’t wind all the way to the next frame. Don’t rage against this machine, go with the grain. Film grain, that is.

I take my Diana Mini with me everywhere. It’s tiny, compact, and good for drive-by shootings because you don’t have to look at the counter—it’ll just stop winding until you get to the next frame. After developing a few rolls, you’ll probably notice some shots overlapped together. My first Mini stopped winding fully and I had it replaced. It would stop winding after just 2-6 clicks. Or not at all.

You should never force your Mini to wind. This will cause the film sprockets to tear or you will break the winding mechanism in the camera itself. I got my broken-Mini roll developed and was actually amused by the results.

I was visiting relatives in the South and found myself bored with nothing but forests and a bag full of cheap drugstore film. My newer Diana Mini winds properly now, but I decided to recreate the “happy accidents” of its predecessor. The steps are pretty arbitrary and are really in no particular order:

1. Shoot
2. Wind only 3-6 clicks
3. Or don’t
4. Shoot the ground
5. Don’t worry if the next shot isn’t relevant
6. Wind only 3-6 clicks
7. Turn your body 90 degrees and shoot
8. Wind completely to the next frame.

If you have a film scanner, even better! While I was shooting I thought if I didn’t like the final product I’ll just crop and chop, but I found that I couldn’t live with myself if I separate these “frames.” I’m certainly not made out of money, and I have a Holga and Diana F+ to feed, but 35mm film is cheap enough that I can play with it using the “Stubborn Diana Mini” method and not feel guilty at all for “wasting” film.

written by ceduxi0n on 2010-04-27 #gear #tutorials #ceduxi0n #35mm #diana-mini #broken-diana-mini #tipster

16 Comments

  1. sarahboat
    sarahboat ·

    I've had the same problem. I have never forced it to go, but sometimes find if I take a snap with the lens cap on that it will end up winding fine. I'm only on my third roll of film ever with the Mini and only had problems with the winding on my second roll. I should know soon what turned out on that roll. I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one who's noticed this! Thanks for the article : )

  2. lomoblood
    lomoblood ·

    shots 3 and 10 are amaazing :]

  3. elletra
    elletra ·

    I had the same sort of problems with my Smena 8m, the frame counter is broken (it goes way too fast), so once I made a full revolution with the frame counter (which was in reality only about 3 frames) it wouldn't wind anymore, so I would just take another shot with my hand over the lens and the counter would start over.

    Because I wasn't sure how the photos would turn out, with the frame counter broken, I took my film to the one hour counter at Walgreens, and when the hour was up they said that their machine wouldn't take the film because of the double/multi exposures (I went along with their surprised dismay) and I got my film processed for FREE! **HINT HINT** The negatives are very clear, I can't wait to get them up on my home :D

  4. mcrstar
    mcrstar ·

    really good photos

  5. ceduxi0n
    ceduxi0n ·

    i didn't think this article would ever be published, but since the Diana Mini started getting more special LSI attention I had a feeling... ;)

    thanks for the comments. i'm a big believer in happy accidents :D i actually have a Stubborn-Mini roll I need to get processed and this just reminded me to do it.

  6. disdis
    disdis ·

    Lovely gallery! I love the Diana Mini too! No matter what you shoot the results have always something special!

  7. stouf
    stouf ·

    Nice shots !

  8. nural
    nural ·

    ahah she does that always, last weekend, she ate 2 of my rolls, after the 4th shot, she's stop winding and I actually tear not only the sprockets but the film itself as well :((

  9. satomi
    satomi ·

    I love those creepy pictures of you, my dear. the creepier the better!;))

  10. pickled_photos
    pickled_photos ·

    you can still win a Diana Mini too :)
    www.pickledphotos.com/campaign.action

  11. moochie_lomo
    moochie_lomo ·

    I was going to make the same comment as saraboat so I'm glad someone did! I think that technique is the best for not wasting too much film.

  12. ucha07
    ucha07 ·

    nice tipster :D

  13. eika
    eika ·

    I have the same problem: sometimes the wheel would stop after just a few clicks. Is it an issue that I can get my Diana exchanged for? I've had it for a week only...

  14. hidings
    hidings ·

    Fantastic results!

  15. gristlemonkey
    gristlemonkey ·

    Don't force it to go that's not the "lomo" way.

    Sorry I'll just use my vintage leica which works properly, will probably out live me and cost less than an LCA. (which I also own and breaks all the time)

  16. pudding-and-pie
    pudding-and-pie ·

    Hi I'm having a problem at the moment that sounds similar but it's possibly not, it'd be great it you could help, hate not being able to use my Diana Mini! Basically it won't wind on at all. First it wasn't winding on much and now not at all so I can't take any photos =( do you or anyone else know what I can do?? I have contacted Lomography customer service but had no reply as yet. I tried to take the film out under a thick blanket but it wouldn't pull out and I don't really know what I'm doing so didn't want to force anything. Thanks so much. I enjoyed the article by the way :)

More Interesting Articles

  • Tipster: Composite Photos

    written by Maaike van Stratum (@stratski) on 2016-01-04 #gear #tutorials
    Tipster: Composite Photos

    There are times when you want to photograph a large building, and it just won't fit into your frame. A cool way to capture that palace or cathedral anyway is to make a composite picture.

    2
  • The "It" Factor in the Fashion Portraiture of Kristy Benjamin

    written by Ciel Hernandez on 2016-05-08 #people
    The "It" Factor in the Fashion Portraiture of Kristy Benjamin

    While colors allure, they are prone to faux pas, hence the most commonly used color scheme when it comes to iconic fashion photography is black and white. Fashion shooter Kristy Benjamin turns her back on the limiting tradition to put her eye-popping candy palette to the test.

  • Lomography Asks: Is It Acceptable to Photograph the Homeless?

    written by Julien Matabuena on 2015-09-25 #news
    Lomography Asks: Is It Acceptable to Photograph the Homeless?

    "Is it acceptable to photograph the homeless?" is one of the most hotly-debated topics when it comes to street photography. There are two opposing sides to this: those who believe it is, and those who don't. For those who do, capturing such photographs is mere documentation of the world around us. For those who don't, doing so is a form of exploitation.

    10
  • Shop News

    20% Off on Selected editions of the La Sardina

    20% Off on Selected editions of the La Sardina

    Bring your own unique happy snapper to all of this summer's festivals and dance the night away! Grab La Sardina editions at 20% off!

  • 3 Tumblrs We Loved This Week: A Love for Design, Interiors That Inspire, My Ideal Home

    written by lomographymagazine on 2015-11-01
    3 Tumblrs We Loved This Week: A Love for Design, Interiors That Inspire, My Ideal Home

    We tidy up the house when we know visitors are coming. It’s not just common courtesy. Our homes represent how we live and how we want to be seen. More than that, the arrangement of furniture and ornaments may influence what we do during our downtime. Want hush or energy? Try the color palettes, textures and shapes in these curated blogs.

  • Lomography Soho London Workshops and Events in July!

    written by lomographysoholondon on 2016-06-21 #news
    Lomography Soho London Workshops and Events in July!

    July is here and with it comes some fab new workshops and a very special exhibition of prints by Ted Polhemus as part of the PUNK LONDON events. It's going to be a blast! Join us, why don't you?

  • Rewind: Lomography Event Recaps From Gallery Stores and Embassy Shops

    written by shhquiet on 2015-12-30 #news
    Rewind: Lomography Event Recaps From Gallery Stores and Embassy Shops

    2015 was a super exciting year for the world of creative photography. We introduced new products, paid homage to analogue photography and collaborated with like-minded folks. If you missed any of the festivities, don't worry - we promise that there will be more fantastic things to come next year! In the meantime, here's a look back into all the happy Lomography memories!

    1
  • Shop News

    Get free film with your La Sardina!

    Get free film with your La Sardina!

    For a limited time only, purchase your choice of La Sardina camera, and use the voucher code SUMMERFILM on check out to get a 3 pack of the Lomography Redscale XR 50 - 200 35mm film for free! Special offer vaild until: July 27, 2016

  • Lomo In-Depth: Do you need a photography degree?

    written by lomographymagazine on 2015-09-07
    Lomo In-Depth: Do you need a photography degree?

    Lomography is a network of working photographers and serious hobbyists. It gives equal space to both clusters; after all craft is the main attraction, whether it is Mark Andersen’s thoughtful framing or Hodachrome’s vibrant doubles. And when technique and skill are the topic, questions about the photographer’s training also crop up.

    4
  • The World According to Herr Willie: The Spirit of Jogja

    written by wil6ka on 2015-11-03 #places
    The World According to Herr Willie: The Spirit of Jogja

    It is the marvel of Java, the cultural center of Indonesia: Yogyakarta, or, as we assimilated locals call it, Jogja! Jogja is full of historic sites and exudes a very adventurous yet welcoming spirit. It is a true multireligious melting pot that has seen kings and sultans come and go, and religions introduced and either went or stayed. Time has been gentle on Jogja. It's one of my most favorite cities in Asia.

    4
  • Tipster: DIY X-Pro Redscale

    written by rancliffhasenza on 2015-09-27 #gear #tutorials
    Tipster: DIY X-Pro Redscale

    Browsing through the Lomography website, you can find a lot of redscale shots, which are all done on color negative films. I asked myself if it’s possible to redscale a slide or chrome film and then cross process it. (And yes, it is.) In this tipster I’m going to teach you how to create the bloodiest homemade redscale film I've ever come across.

    10
  • Shop News

    Lomo'Instant Reykjavik Edition

    Lomo'Instant Reykjavik Edition

    Inspired by the Icelandic midnight sky, get endless creativity, take multiple exposed instant snapshots, experiment with long exposure and light painting shots!

  • Lomography X FOTO HITS Medium Format Rumble

    written by Lomography on 2015-11-26 #news
    Lomography X FOTO HITS Medium Format Rumble

    With an expanded field of view and its ability to produce high quality images and capture minute detail, medium format photography has become the top choice of many photographers. Lomography is working hard to make sure that it keeps going with the continued production of medium format film and cameras. The current issue of German magazine FOTO HITS focuses on medium format photography. And with this rumble, we want to prove why medium format photography is king. Take your Diana F+, Holga 120, Lubitel 166+ or the new Lomo LC-A 120 and show us your best square shots!

    2
  • Lumiere London: A Festival of Light

    written by lomographysoholondon on 2016-01-12 #news
    Lumiere London: A Festival of Light

    Lumiere London is a brand new light festival celebrating some of the most iconic streets and buildings in various locations around the city. It runs from January 14th - 16th and is free to attend. There will be installations, videos, interactive pieces and projections, all coming to life at night.

  • 50 Electrifying Light Paintings From The Lomography Community

    written by tomas_bates on 2015-08-17 #news #gear
    50 Electrifying Light Paintings From The Lomography Community

    Light Painting is a cool technique that we love to do when we're in the mood for experimenting with photos. It's super easy and fun, and it only requires a dark room, a friend or two to collaborate with, a camera with long exposure mode and a light painting tool to get started. Check out 50 of the most vibrant light painting photos taken by your fellow Lomographers after the cut!

    5