Scientists reveal how to roll a perfect joint

What is the best way to roll a joint? In today’s post we bring you a curious novelty: a group of scientists have used a smoking machine to analyze the potency of marijuana joints, and have discovered that the way the joint is rolled influences the amount of cannabinoids that are inhaled. Join us until the end and become a reefer expert!

How to roll a marijuana joint

Before we dive into the scientific study, let’s start at the beginning: how joints are rolled. Surely, by now you know how to roll a peta, or have an idea.


The necessary materials are:

Here are the explicit instructions, step by step, for those who need more information:

Total Time: 8 minutes

1-Shred the marijuana with a grinder:

Shred the marijuana buds and grind them using a grinder. The herb should be well shredded and homogeneous for a more uniform burn. Be sure to remove any unwanted stems or seeds.

2- Preparation of the material:

Have on hand what you will need: the shredded marijuana, the paper, and the nozzle. If you decide to use a cardboard filter, cut it into a rectangular strip and fold it into an accordion shape to fit the mouthpiece of the joint.

3- Place the marijuana on the rolling paper:

Hold the rolling paper between your fingers with the sticky side up and facing you. Distribute the shredded marijuana evenly along the paper, leaving space at one end for sealing.

4- Roll the joint:

With the thumbs and forefingers of both hands, hold the paper and the marijuana. Start rolling the paper gently up and down, applying light pressure to compact the marijuana. Be sure to roll evenly and tightly.

5- Place the nozzle

Place the cardboard mouthpiece or filter on the end of the joint and fold it inward.

6- Close the joint:

Once you have rolled the marijuana with the paper, moisten the sticky end of the paper with your tongue or a little water. Gently press the adhesive end onto the body of the joint to seal it.

We take this opportunity to introduce you to one of the latest additions to the catalog of Cannactiva : our Smoking Tool Kit which includes everything: tray, rolling papers and cardboard filters, glass filter, lighter and grinder.

Other methods for rolling joints

There are rolling machines that can help you roll, but the most practical and effective way is to have well-trained hands that know the technique to perfection. In case you were wondering, the cannabis pre-rolls you find in our store are made with specialized machines already designed for the cannabis industry (we don’t have a person rolling joints day and night).

Scientific study on how to roll joints

What everyone looks for when smoking marijuana is that the material has a high concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or even pronounced aromas, because we now know the effect that cannabis terpenes have. But what many of us have overlooked is the form of consumption: how the joint can affect the amount of cannabinoids inhaled and their aromas.

With the increasing legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes in Canada and several U.S. states (in Europe, it is a pending issue), the popularity of joints has increased significantly. One of the most demanded products are pre-rolled cannabis joints, which have increased sales exponentially. This has led to the emergence of an industry dedicated to providing increasingly detailed information to cannabis businesses and consumers. Most existing quality controls measure the amount of active ingredients, pesticides and heavy metals in marijuana, but they overlook one important factor: how the joint is consumed.

In this context, Markus Roggen, president and chief scientist of Delic Labs, a cannabis and psilocybin research center in Vancouver, British Columbia, has developed a technology that makes it possible to measure the levels of cannabinoids and terpenes in each inhalation, as well as the presence of possible toxic substances in the smoke.

In the recent Canadian Chemistry Conference and Exhibition held last month (June 2023) in Vancouver, Roggen and his team presented their work to determine whether the concentration of cannabinoids is the most relevant factor for the effect of marijuanaThe use of the reefer, or if there are other aspects that contribute to a pleasurable experience, such as the type of rolling of the reefer. Roggen explained that there is a lack of quantitative research on the traditional and most popular method of consuming marijuana: the joint. For this reason, he began his research on what happens when smoking joints, from a chemical point of view.

Approaching the chemistry behind joints

The joint is something very simple but with a great chemistry behind it. With just shredded cannabis, paper and a mouthpiece, it is a perfect way to extract cannabinoids.

When the joint is lit, the combustion temperatures of the herb activate the cannabinoids present in it, in a process known as decarboxylation. At the same time, these compounds volatilize, turning into a gaseous state, which allows them to be inhaled with each puff. These cannabinoids reach our lungs, from where they reach the bloodstream and produce an almost immediate effect on the organism.

What is the study on marijuana joints?

What Roggen and his team did in this study was to prepare a few joints with different cannabis samples: some THC-dominant and some CBD-dominant. They crushed the grass into particles of different sizes: 1, 3 and 5 millimeters in diameter. They then rolled the weed into joints with 0.5 grams of each sample.

The joints were placed in a smoking simulator machine that inhaled evenly six times for three seconds, then exhaled. Using filters and cannabinoid analysis techniques, the chemical components of the smoke were measured at the beginning, middle and end of each joint.

Grind size: the magic of joints starts at the grinder

The first thing the study tells us is that particle size affects the potency and duration of the joint, that is, the amount of cannabinoids contained in the smoke and the time in which the joint is consumed.

It was found that joints with the most finely shredded weed (in 1 mm particles) provided the highest amount of cannabinoids in the smoke, resulting in more potent effects. This is because the small size allows for faster and more efficient combustion of the plant material.

On the other hand, joints rolled with less shredded weed (5 mm particles) last longer, and their effect is less intense but longer.

What is the best part of the joint?

Another curious fact is that the composition of the smoke varies depending on the part of the joint burned. At the end of the joint the highest amount of cannabinoids is concentrated, while at the beginning more terpenes are released, which influence the taste. That is to say, when lighting a joint we notice better flavor at the beginning but less effects (more terpenes are inhaled but less cannabinoids), and it is at the end of the joint when we will notice more high, but less aromas.

THC joints vs. CBD joints

One of the most surprising findings of the research was that cannabidiol (CBD)-dominant cannabis joints were cannabidiol (CBD) contained a much higher amount of cannabinoids compared to THC-dominant joints.

THC-dominant varieties showed a concentration in the smoke of between 19 and 28 mg THC per jointwhile CBD-dominant strains contained significantly higher amounts of the dominant cannabinoid, ranging from 90 and 100 mg of CBD per jointThis represents an increase in cannabinoid content of between 200 and 400%. This indicates that the amount of cannabinoids reaching the mouth is higher for CBD cannabis joints than for THC marijuana joints.

Well, now you know that if you grind less weed, you will have a longer-lasting joint with less intense effects. On the other hand, if you want a powerful effect, grind the weed well and smoke it until the end, which is where there is the highest concentration of cannabinoids… You are already almost an alchemist!

We, the manufacturers of pre-sliced products, use this information to improve the consistency, aroma and flavor of our pre-sliced products. We will continue to keep you updated on cannabis industry news!


What other type of paper can be used for rolling?

If you have run out of rolling paper, it is not recommended that you use normal paper, newspaper, baking paper, recycled paper, or any other paper that is not expressly indicated for smoking. Cigarette rolling papers are made from natural plant fibers such as hemp, rice, flax or cellulose from other sources, and are free of chemical treatments that could be released during combustion and result in more toxic smoke. For example, foil paper contains bleaches and chemicals that are toxic to inhalation. If you find yourself without rolling papers, use another method of marijuana consumption.

Is there a special technique for rolling a better joint?

Rolling a joint is a skill that improves with practice. Experiment with the variety of herb, the type of grinding (more or less fine), the pressing and the environment in which it feels best to you. Some techniques that can help include using a pen or lighter stone to better press and compact the joint once rolled, using a grinder to get a fine grind, and using a filter to prevent the cannabis from being consumed too quickly.

En Cannactiva queremos cambiar la perspectiva sobre el cannabis. Te traemos lo mejor de la planta a través de nuestros productos y de los posts que puedes leer en nuestro [...]

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