Rolling papers are made from a number of different materials, and are available in a range of sizes. They also come in many different varieties, including bleached, unbleached, organic, non-organic, gummed, gum-less, and slow- and fast-burning. The choice of rolling paper is often a matter of personal preference, with consideration given to such factors as flavor, lightness, and evenness of burn.
Read on for the different types of rolling papers and various size options available.
Types of Papers
One of the most popular materials used in rolling paper manufacture is hemp. One of the strongest plant-derived fibers in the world, hemp gives rolling papers a smooth and durable quality that makes them ideally suited to rolling thicker cigarettes. The fact that the production of hemp-based rolling papers also requires no tree-derived wood pulp makes them an attractive option for those who are environmentally-concerned.
Flax is another popular raw material for rolling papers. Obtained from the Linum or Linaria plant, flax is also used in the production of linen cloth. Noted for the smooth and silky smoking experience they provide, flax rolling papers also have the advantage of not imparting any unwanted flavors or odors to the smoke. Flax papers generally provide a much purer smoking experience than most other types of rolling papers, making them ideally suited for smokers who wish to retain as much of the natural flavors of their herbs or tobacco as possible.
Rice papers, as the name implies, are made from the fibers of the rice plant. One of the most appealing qualities of such papers is how slow they burn. In fact, few papers available on the market burn as slowly as rice papers. These papers allow users to get a longer and more satisfying flavor experience. Most rice papers are made in Japan or China, although they are also widely available around the world. Keep in mind that most rice rolling papers have a certain amount of hemp fiber in them, although this does not detract from the experience or impair performance one bit.
Cellulose is used in the manufacturing of clear rolling papers. Providing a unique and novel smoking experience, clear rolling papers are totally transparent, and they provide quite an interesting alternative to everyday rolling papers.
Although the thought of smoking cellulose paper might turn you off, you should be aware that the cellulose used in rolling paper production is an almost entirely different substance from the cellulose used in making plastic bags. Rolling paper cellulose is naturally derived from cotton or trees, and contains no plastic at all. However, keep in mind that some rolling papers contain glycerin, which makes them burn quite a bit harsher than rolling papers made from hemp, flax or rice fibers.
A Guide to Rolling Paper Sizes
Rolling papers come in an array of sizes and proportions, and manufacturers often use their own unique terms when referring to dimensions. This can cause a great deal of confusion when buying papers without being able to pick them up, such as when making a purchase over the internet. Because the size of the rolling paper is a significant factor in the quality and performance of the resulting cigarette, it is essential to be aware of the dimensions by which the sizes of commercially available rolling papers are determined.
Most rolling papers available on the market come in single wide, 1 ¼, 1 ½, and king-sized. Each one is better suited to different requirements: Single wides are suitable for standard cigarettes for example, while king-sized papers are better suited to larger, thicker cigarettes.
Single Wide Rolling Papers
Most rolling paper manufacturers carry “single wide” lines, but even these tend to vary in size from brand to brand. Most single wide papers available on the market measure 68mm to 70mm long and 34mm to 36mm wide. These dimensions equal approximately 2.75″ by 1.40″. Single wides are the most commonly available types of rolling paper, and are readily available in various brands at most places that sell smoking equipment and accessories.
1 ¼ Rolling Papers
As the name implies, 1 ¼ rolling papers are sized like “one-and-one-quarter” of a standard single wide paper. These rolling papers range from 76mm to 78mm in length and 45mm to 48mm in width, which is approximately 3.1″ by 1.8″. These sizes are better suited for rolling thicker and longer cigarettes than standard wide papers. As with single wide papers, there is some variance between the 1 ¼-sized rolling papers sold by different manufacturers, but most papers marketed with this size appellation generally have similar measurements.
1 ½ Rolling Papers
1 ½ rolling papers are even larger, measuring as much as one-and-a-half standard wide papers. With these papers, very large and thick cigarettes can be easily rolled. 1 ½ rolling papers range in size from 76mm to 78mm long and 60mm to 62mm wide, which is approximately 3.1″ x 2.4″. There is usually little if any variance between the 1 ½ rolling papers offered by different brands. Rolling papers of this size are not quite as common as other papers, but they are available from many online smoking and accessories shops.
King-Size Rolling Papers
King-size rolling papers are among the largest commercially available rolling papers. Apart from specialist lines from certain brands, king-size papers are the biggest that you can find anywhere, allowing you to roll extremely large cigarettes. They generally range in size from 100mm to 105mm long and 55mm to 60mm wide. This comes to about 4″ by 2″. Rolling papers marketed with the king-size appellation tend to be sized fairly consistently among the different manufacturers.
Check out this useful video about the history of rolling papers. It should make things a little clearer.