How To Roll A Joint

Brush up your skills on this classic toking device.

Illustration by James Stanton

Illustration by James Stanton

Bomber, dutchie, thai stick. Called many names, the smoking experience is singular. Knowing how to roll a joint or a blunt is cool. I know you can buy pre-rolls; that’s not the point. It’s like baking your own cookies. It’s just… better. Plus, nothing turns up the party like whipping out your weed kit and rolling up a fatty right on the spot.

If you’re new to rolling or coming back to it, there are three basic forms to master: joints, bats, and blunts.

Obviously, you’ll need weed. Get a grinder. Grinders shred plant material, but keep it fluffy. Grab some rolling papers from different brands in different sizes. Papers marked “1 ¼” will create joints approximately the same size as a cigarette.

When you have all your parts, put on a good movie or album and grind up a bunch of weed. Get comfortable with the fact that you are going to go through a pack of papers before you get the hang of it.

Traditional joint: Fold your paper in half like a taco. Keep the gum edge on the inside, facing you. Fill your taco half-full with weed. Roll your weed-filled paper taco back and forth. Feel the weed turning into a little log inside the paper. Don’t roll it too tightly. Tuck the front flap behind your weed log with your thumbs and continue rocking back and forth. The paper will begin to tighten around the weed log. Again, don’t get too tight, or you’ll block airflow. When you feel like the joint is holding shape, wet the gum edge and roll one final time, allowing the gum edge to stick to the body of the joint. Twist the ends closed. Bam! You have yourself an old-school doobie.

The bat: This looks like a bat, with a narrow and wide end. Create a filter by rolling a small strip of stiff paper a half-inch by one inch wide into a tiny tube. Make sure you can suck through it. Place the filter at one end of your paper. Fill the rest with weed. Lick the gum edge near the filter and wrap it tightly around the filter, then lick the gum edge and seal the edges of the paper in a conical shape. Fill the paper cone with pot. Take a long pointy tool and pack down the weed at the wide end, adding more grass until it’s full. As before, don’t pack so tightly you can’t suck through it. When it’s just about full, flatten the paper ends down or twist close. New-school bat joint, ready for a home run.

The blunt: Last, but not least. This is a different type of rolling and smoking experience. Blunts are joints rolled in tobacco leaf casings like cigars or cigarillos. Take your cigarillo and empty out all the tobacco. If you like spliffs, blend some of that tobacco with your weed, otherwise offer your tobacco to local spirits. You can also find empty blunt wrappers at most smoke shops. Wet the whole wrapper with a little water. The idea is to make the wrapper a bit more flexible, but not to soak it. Pack it with weed. Lick one edge of the wrapper and tuck the other end under it, sealing it up. Once it’s sealed, “bake” your blunt with a lighter, running the flame quickly back and forth over the wrapper to dry the edge and tighten it up. Your blunt should be ready to smoke weed ev’ry day.

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