Crafting even a basic, no-frills joint can be a frustrating pursuit. Like playing bridge or using a debit with a security chip, rolling is a skill that can take years of trial and error to master.
But as newfangled trends in cannabis like vaping and dabbing take smokers farther and farther away from interacting with good old bud, it can be satisfying to roll one up with friends now and then.
If you’re already solid on the basics of how to roll a joint here are some of the more elusive joints that are sure to impress.
Allegedly popular in Amsterdam, this trick looks cool and uses less paper.
When rolled correctly, a regular old cone will have a significant amount of overlap as it curls over onto itself, between one edge of the paper and the place where the adhesive is tamped down. You can eliminate this overlap — and reduce the amount of paper ash you’re inhaling, boosting your bud’s flavor — by rolling inside out. Proceed as usual, but flip your paper so that the glue strip faces down and is on the side closest to you. Sprinkle in your bud, and with your thumbs directly against the glue strip, roll up tightly. When the glue touches the inside of your paper, carefully but firmly lick the outside of the joint where it meets the glue strip (yes, it’ll still seal). You should be left with a triangle of paper hanging off the edge, which you can snip off or, if you’re especially dexterous, burn off with a lighter. This video will coach you through.
If you don’t want to get especially high or you only plan on sharing with one or two other people, a pinner — a thin joint with low cannabis content — will do the trick.
Since everything will be on a smaller scale, avoid using papers wider than 1 ½”, which will be harder to manipulate. Single wides or 1 ¼” papers should work well. Grind up one half to three quarters of the bud that you usually might. If you’re using a filter, trim it a little bit smaller than usual to allow for as much bud as possible. Then sprinkle in your leaves, but instead of tapering the filling as you would with a cone, keep it in a thin, straight line. With the very tips of your fingers, as close to the nail as possible, roll up tightly, creasing the paper if necessary. Enjoy while it lasts! It’ll burn pretty quickly.
Learning to roll a pinner will also come in handy if you’re looking to tackle more complex joint constructions.
You’ll be rolling two joints here. For the large vertical arm of the cross, use a wider paper. Roll it up into a thick cylinder (rather than a cone) with a filter in one end. It should be thick enough for you to slip a smaller joint right through the middle. For the second, the horizontal arm of the cross, roll up a small pinner — without a filter and twisted off at both ends. Now take a needle or any thin, sharp implement and poke a hole three-quarters of the way down the length of the larger joint. Slowly rotate the needle, working it so that the hole becomes large enough to accommodate the pinner. Then carefully push the smaller joint through the hole, forming a cross. You can cut off the glue strips off of spare papers to seal up the places where the two joints meet. Then just poke a small hole (no need to bore it any wider than the width of the needle) through either side of the small pinner; this will allow the smaller joint to burn at the same rate as the larger one. That’s it. Spark up all three ends and enjoy.
Seth Rogen expertly and patiently shows you how in this video.
Nostalgic for the days of making elaborate knots and braids with plastic lanyard? Here’s a more mature (and arguably more fun) version.
Using paper of any width, roll up three fairly loose joints — all without filters, and all open on both ends. Once they’re rolled and sealed, take each one and carefully massage it so that it’s pliable enough to manipulate without breaking. Using a pencil, poke down the bud at one end of each joint, leaving about a quarter inch empty. Pinch these empty ends and twist them together, combining all three joints. That should leave you ample room to gently braid them together. Now all you have to do is lock together the open ends with some heavy cardstock and cover that up with half of a spare paper, keeping the glue strip away from you.
For maximum visual effect, use a different colored or patterned paper for each joint.
This one isn’t technically a joint but it looks like something Gandalf would smoke, which should make it worth trying.
Empty out two blunt cigars by slitting them down the middle. Use the paper from one to roll a moderately thick blunt with a filter at one end. Trim the other paper to a strip about 1 ½” long — curl this rectangle into a cylinder and stand it on end. This will form the bowl of your pipe. Using scissors, made a slit that extends about halfway down this cylinder. You should be able to slide the slit over the open end of your rolled blunt, leaving a bit of overhang. Now fold those overhanging pieces on top of each other, around the bottom of the blunt, and seal them with the adhesive from the scraps of your other blunt paper.
The finished product should look just like a corncob pipe. All that’s left now is to seal the inner angle where the bowl meets the blunt — you can use some more blunt adhesive, or even some melted concentrated cannabis wax. Pack the bowl and puff away.
This guy walks you through it.