How to use a Joint Roller

joint in ashtray

Rolling joints by hand can be time-consuming and tricky, especially for novice consumers. That’s why learning how to use a joint roller can revolutionize toking.

Photo: Unspash

What is a joint roller?

A joint roller is a machine used to roll joints more easily, saving you time and frustration. It has a series of plates that shape and evenly distribute ganja on the rolling paper. 

Although smoking joints is a popular way to consume cannabis, not everyone knows how to roll a joint. And you don’t want to be that friend who always depends on someone else to roll your joints. 

With this device, you can produce store-quality joints quickly.

Manual joint roller

Joint rollers are available in different styles and sizes. They can also be manual or automatic. You’ll be required to use your hand to turn the plates and roll your joints for manual joint rollers. These types are usually small and portable, making them ideal for rolling a joint on the go. 

Automatic joint roller

Automatic joint rollers, however, have a motor that mechanically rolls cannabis flowers into joints. They’re usually larger and more costly than manual rollers. However, they’re more effective and faster than the manual ones. Some can have extra features, including a built-in grinder. Or a filling chamber, which releases the exact amount of cannabis. This ensures you produce uniform and tightly packed joints, which burn evenly, boosting the whole smoking experience. 

Automatic joint rollers also have a user-friendly interface design, making it easy for almost everyone to operate them. 

How to use a joint roller step by step

As discussed above, you can choose from several types of joint rollers. However, regardless of the roller type, you’ll need a few things to start. 

  • Joint roller
  • Cannabis flower (0.5 to 1.5 grams)
  • Filter
  • Rolling papers 
  • Rolling tray
  • Grinder 

Before starting the rolling process, read the provided manual or instructions to set up your joint roller machine on a rolling tray. Once you’re done, go to the first step:

Clean the roller 

This is a critical step when you’re using your roller. Even though you have removed it from its package, dust, and fuzz can still accumulate on the joint roller. These contaminants can affect the smoothness of your joints. Also, they can interfere with the machine’s proper functioning. 

Use a soft cloth dipped in alcohol to wipe and clean the roller. Then use water to rinse it and allow it to dry before rolling a joint.

Prepare the cannabis 

Take your time to examine the cannabis for moisture visually. Cannabis flower burns differently when in a joint, bong, or pipe. Hence, choosing the right bud for your joint roller is crucial.

The buds you use in a joint should be crisp to the touch, and branches should snap with little to no effort. If you use damp buds, you’re unlikely to have a pleasant smoking experience. 

Once satisfied with your bud, remove seeds and other impurities and grind the flower to a medium coarseness. If your joint roller machine has a built-in grinder, you don’t have to look for another one.

Open the joint roller 

Open it by sliding the halves through grooves on each side of the machine. After unlocking your roller, run the finger through the center to guarantee enough space for your cannabis. And place the filter on the end of the rolling machine (either right or left). 

Some rollers have a setting to determine the size of your joints, for instance, regular or skinny-sized joints. Follow the given instructions to adjust accordingly. 

Pack your ground cannabis 

Evenly distribute the flower between the rollers (don’t worry, we’ll add the paper later). Avoid adding too much weed, leading to a bad joint that burns evenly. 

Close and roll

Close your tool and discard any excess weed above the rollers. Follow the directions given to roll the rollers in one full rotation.

Add the rolling paper 

Slide the roller paper between the rollers. However, ensure the adhesive side is up and facing you. Roll the roller towards you until only the glue part is visible. Wet the glue portion and give the machine a couple of rolls. 

Open the roller

At this point, you should have a well-rolled joint. Open the roller as discussed above and squeeze out your joint. Avoid applying too much, as this can damage the joint. 

What else to do? Smoke it up! However, ensure you start with small doses, especially if it’s your first time using cannabis. 

Are joint rollers any good?

Now that you have learned how to use a joint roller, are there any benefits? Sure, there are a couple of benefits  to using joint rollers. 

Minimize waste 

Using a joint roller machine will produce reliably sized and shaped joints that burn evenly, with enough flowers. The perfect shape also avoids issues such as canoeing, which can lead to faster herb burn and wastage of your precious bud. 

Time effective

Manual joint rolling can take considerable time, especially if you’re a newbie. However, you can easily produce joints even with limited time when using a joint roller. 

Essential skill to roll faster

Knowing how to roll joints is an essential skill for any cannabis enthusiast. A joint roller can change how you roll your joints. Take your time to learn how you can use this mechanical device to roll tightly packed joints and elevate your smoking experience. 


About Jeremy

Jeremy graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Information Technology from the Technical University of Kenya. Over the past four years, he's been passionate about writing on a wide range of cannabis-related topics. In addition to guides, he's explored various aspects of cannabis, including its medical benefits, legalization efforts, cultivation techniques, and its impact on society. You can reach him at [email protected].