When it comes to marijuana, users understand that knowing the right measurements goes a long way. No one likes to be cheated out of their money, especially if the weed in question is nothing special!
Still, the problem we’ve encountered the most has to do a lot with the use of two different measurement systems: metric and imperial. Usually, those who grew up using the metric system have no clue how much a pound is. Likewise, those using the imperial system would never even think of using grams on a daily basis.
Unfortunately, knowing how many grams there are in an eighth, a quarter, or an ounce of weed isn’t as easy as it seems. Because of that, here’s a neat guide that explains everything in detail and ensures no one ever even tries to sell you less product at a higher price.
First Things First — Do the Measurements Really Matter?
If you’re a true casual smoker who only likes to get high from time to time, using a scale to determine precisely how much marijuana you’ve got is a bit too much trouble. However, for those who like weed but don’t want to get scammed by dealers who just love to round up numbers — measurements matter.
In most cases, the numbers aren’t rounded up to obscenely low amounts. If you’re looking to get an eighth of weed, it’s not uncommon to round up 3.543 grams to 3.5. Nevertheless, imagine how much of a difference it would be if you were buying a large amount, for example, a kilogram (1,000 grams)?
In the end, getting your money’s worth matters, especially if you’re using marijuana for something other than getting high. Besides that, why would you pay a fixed price for less product when you can show how savvy you are with numbers and ensure you don’t get scammed?
A Quick Cheat Sheet for Weed Enthusiasts
|AMOUNT ON THE STREET||THE METRIC SYSTEM||VISUAL GUIDE|
|1 gram||1 gram||Penny or grape|
|An “Eighth”||≈ 3.5 grams||Kiwi|
|A “Quarter”||≈ 7 grams||Apple|
|Half ounce||≈ 14 grams||Grapefruit|
|Ounce||≈ 28 grams||Coconut|
The Trouble With Measurements in the Illicit Market
When talking about measurements, it’s crucial to mention that in some states, marijuana is legal in terms of recreational use. If we want to buy it in the middle of the day, we can, just like we buy alcohol or our groceries.
But the real advantage of such regulated markets is that the amounts are under plenty of scrutiny and control. Overall, everything is more precise, so it’s expected that we’ll get our money’s worth.
In contrast, dealers don’t pay much attention to numbers, and there’s no one to control them in the illicit market. As such, they can remove some of the product when selling to users, and if the users don’t have scales, they could be cheated out of their money. Besides that, if it’s illegal, you cannot complain about it, and the dealer suffers no consequences whatsoever.
Know the Common Weed Measurements
Depending on how much money we have and what we’re looking for, there are various amounts we can opt for when buying weed.
The most common measurement is an eighth of an ounce of weed. Now, if we were to split hairs, we’d say that equals to 3.54688 grams. However, as some of you already know, you won’t see many dealers using that exact measurement. Most of them round it up to 3.5 grams for easier distribution and less confusion.
Today, an eighth of weed is the usual amount most people go for unless they use weed infrequently. In that case, they’re bound to opt for a sixteenth of an ounce, also known as a half-eighth. That equals to 1.772 grams.
So, how much would a quarter be? If your math skills haven’t faded away yet, you already know the answer to this. Two-eighths of weed make up a quarter, which is 7.0874 grams. Again, all those numbers may confuse consumers, so most dealers round it up to 7 grams.
To get how much a half ounce is, just multiply 7 with 2 (14 grams), or get an accurate measurement by multiplying 7.0874 with 2 (14.17475 grams). And the same thing goes for figuring out how much an ounce is, only in that case, multiply a quarter by 4. You’ll get 28 or 28.3495 grams, to be exact.
The Bigger the Amount — The Greater the Difference
Now, you may be wondering — who is going to buy one ounce of marijuana? Well, heavy users, of course! If someone loves smoking weed, rain or shine, one ounce is a good investment in the long run. Depending on where they’re getting it and what quality, it will set them back $150–$300+ — and that’s only in states where weed is legal (for instance, Washington, Colorado, Oregon, California, and most recently: Michigan).
Of course, users can also go even higher than that. You can even buy a pound of weed (equals to 16 ounces), or a quarter or half-pound. Just know that in that case, knowing to at least eyeball the amount would be quite useful. With higher amounts come more significant discrepancies in the fractions of grams, so you could easily find yourself spending your hard-earned money on less product.
Is Eyeballing the Amount Possible at All?
Unless we’re superhumans with the ability to measure weed just by holding it, eyeballing the amount is a bad idea. It’s the least effective method, as density and moisture content also play a crucial role in both the appearance and the feel of each gram. A nugget of weed may be densely packed, weighing more than it looks. Likewise, you may get a larger, often drier, fluffy chunk that weighs a lot less than it seems.
However, it’s unlikely that we’ll have a scale with us every time we’re buying weed, so at least knowing how to eyeball a rough estimate is useful. What we’ve found, though, is that eyeballing even a gram of marijuana is pretty hard.
As mentioned, the weight depends on how much moisture the nugget contains, as well as how densely packed it is. Overall, it has been shown that denser lumps are roughly the size of a penny or a grape, whereas fluffier ones can be a lot bigger.
If you’ve been using weed for a while, buying it a gram at a time is unlikely to be cost-effective. This is the smallest amount you can get, both legally and through illicit dealers. It’s also the amount found in most pre-rolled joints, which could cost you anywhere from $7 to $15, with top-quality cannabis going up to $20.
We have to get more visual now, as we’re in the imperial system territory, and eyeballing an eighth is more complicated than it seems. Overall, when you take all the nuggets into your hand, they should be the size of a kiwi. At just over 3.5 grams, an eighth (of an ounce) of weed will set you back $25 to $60, depending on where and what you’re buying. It’s a cost-effective solution for casual to moderate smokers.
Those who go through their stash quickly are likely to opt for a quarter of an ounce of weed. At about 7 grams, this amount equals to a small apple.
A Half Ounce
If you’re baking your cannabis into some edibles, you’ll probably have to go for a half-ounce — most recipes call for this amount. What’s more, if you go through your weed quickly but don’t have the time to go out to get more every week, half an ounce should last you longer than most amounts.
However, to eyeball the right amount, imagine a fluffy grapefruit. A half-ounce of weed roughly translates to 14 grams or the size of a grapefruit. But again, visually, it could look smaller than that if the buds are densely packed.
Finally, we have an ounce of weed, which is the most cost-effective option for frequent smokers who want to save money in the long run. Typically, an ounce will cost you $150, but if you’re getting top-quality weed, expect to pay over $300 for it. And, as for our visual guide, the amount should roughly be the size of a coconut. A pound, on the other hand, would be the size of a watermelon.
Reliable Methods for Measuring Out the Buds
Using a Scale
For the most precise measurements, we always recommend users to get a real scale. There’s nothing else that would allow you to know precisely how many grams there are in a bud. Besides that, it’s the easiest method around with simple-to-read results and no learning curve whatsoever.
However, when getting a scale, it’s wise to take into account its precision, capacity, and price. Online stores often have discounts and better prices overall, so it’s more cost-effective in the long run to buy the scale online. The money you save like that could be used to buy more weed!
Nevertheless, the accuracy part is the real money-saver here. A scale that is accurate within 0.1 grams will allow you to get the most precise reading. Still, that doesn’t mean a regular kitchen scale will do. Baking is far more forgiving than measuring weed, so such scales aren’t the most accurate around.
Finally, if possible, opt for a scale that offers at least 200-gram capacity. You may not be a frequent user now, but you could become one, with more and more states legalizing marijuana.
That doesn’t mean, though, that the scale has to cost an obscene amount of money. There are plenty of scales that cost about $10 and offer just enough accuracy to know that you’re not getting scammed. On the other hand, if you’re looking to buy larger quantities, a top-of-the-line scale is crucial so as to avoid significant discrepancies in the measurements.
Using Your Smartphone
We live in a technology-driven era, so of course, there are scale apps. If you’re in a hurry and cannot get your scale right away, these could come in handy. Still, know that most of them have intricate instructions and would probably need to be appropriately calibrated to work. In any case, they’re not as accurate as a real scale, so don’t rely on them too much.
Using a Penny and a Ruler
A bit less effective than using a scale, but still better than eyeballing the amount is using the ruler and penny method.
You can actually create your own scale at home by using some objects you already have within reach. For the pivot, a good idea is to opt for an even, rectangular eraser. Place your ruler on it and add a penny on one side. For accurate results, choose any penny made after 1982, as each should weigh 2.5 grams. Then, just keep adding weed until you have 2.5 grams on either side, i.e., until the ruler is level.
Using a DIY Scale
The final method involves making our own scale with a couple of pieces that won’t be sorely missed around the house. You’ll need:
- Some string (a long piece of it)
- A drill
- A plastic hanger
- Pair of scissors
- A nickel (acts as a counterweight because it weighs 5 grams).
Start by getting rid of the top of the hanger (you can cut it off with scissors) and drilling a hole in its center. While the drill is still in your hand, make two other holes on either side of the hanger. However, to ensure they’re at the same distance from the center, use a ruler to measure it all out.
You have one piece of string, so to make two equal ones, fold and cut into two. Tie each piece through the holes at the ends of the hanger. Then, cut another length of string and tie it through the center hole, as that’s the piece that’ll hold the weight.
All that’s left is to use some cups as makeshift baskets. Tie them to the strings on either side and hang the hanger somewhere. That’s it — you now have a DIY scale to weigh out the buds.
Never Waste Weed Again: Tips and Tricks for Both Novices and Veteran Users
We know that learning all these measurements is a bit tricky, especially if you aren’t a frequent user or good at math. However, as you could see, the discrepancies and all the rounding up could mean you’re getting less product than you paid for. Therefore, keep these tips at the back of your mind and go over them a couple of times to ensure you never waste or get less product again.
Top 5 Tips for Weed Users
#1 Use exact numbers as often as you can. The exact decimal shows how much you’re really getting. Even such a small difference could prove to be costly over time, so opt for precise measurements whenever possible.
#2 Never use a kitchen scale to measure out the product. These just aren’t reliable enough, and there are plenty of good, accurate scales on the market anyway. Just make sure yours is accurate up to 0.1 of a gram.
#3 Don’t buy a couple of pounds or kilos of product in one go. Even in states where recreational marijuana is legal, these are illegal amounts an individual can have on them. Ounces and halves are a much better and safer choice — play by the rules of the game, even if you’re lucky enough to live in Colorado or some other weed-loving state.
#4 Avoid uneven burning and air pockets by grinding your product. That way, you’ll get a slower, smoother burn, not to mention that you’ll avoid wasting your precious weed.
#5 Plan it all out to ensure you’re not going over your budget. By knowing all these measurements, you can calculate how much you’re spending. For example, if you pay $200 for an ounce, and each of your joints has about 0.5 grams, each costs you $3.60. Knowing this may not be useful while you’re enjoying the weed, but in the long run, it could help you plan out your expenses well and know when to curb your usage if needed.
Know Your Slang Cheat Sheet
- A dime bag will cost you about $10 and will contain roughly a gram of weed.
- For about $5, you can get a nickel bag, which has about 5 grams of weed.
- For a dub, you’ll get $20 worth of weed, depending on the quality and where you get it. If it’s a top-quality type of weed, it may contain less than 3.5 grams. Low-quality dubs usually have a full 3.5 grams.
- If you want a quarter, you’ll ask for a quad, which is about 7 grams.
- A slice or an eighth always has 5 grams. It gets its name from pizza — the larger ones usually have about eight slices in total.
The point of this article wasn’t to confuse you with numbers or take you back to those dreadful math classes from your youth. We believe that every weed user should have their facts straight, and that includes knowing all the measurements, tips, and tricks they might need while using weed.
Still, it goes without saying that you ought to do your research as well and verify the quality. At the same time, using the measurement methods we’ve talked about will ensure you don’t go over the legal amount or get less than what you paid for.
In the end, knowledge is key, even when we’re talking about weed. The lowest amounts of weed are measured via the metric system. However, as it goes up in weight, the imperial system prevails, which is why it’s essential to know how to convert the measurements. We’ve given you all the pointers — now it’s time for you to put it all into practice!