You wouldn't believe how many times I have
sniffed at and discounted the usefulness of hand rollers. Until recently, I sincerely felt
that if you really wanted (or needed) to smoke unfiltered handrolled cigarettes then at
least you should roll them by hand. There is no doubt this bigotry on my part that
disparages these funny looking little devices was not completely unreasonable but based on
my lack of success in using them. And even the few times I managed to conquer their
intricate mysteries, the resulting smoke tasted much like the unfiltered Camel
"coffin nails" my remote ancestors were reputed to smoke.
Now it is true that every issue we review these little demons belonging to one ilk or another and usually find some redeeming quality to them. For instance the Rizla Rolling Box generated a very positive, if not somewhat bizarre, review in our March/April Issue where we found the "box" quite a useful tool. However, even though the rolling process was simplified and the resulting product was quite a nice little cigarette, it still suffered the same symptoms of the other handroller sticks in that it was just too strong of a smoke. It is a fact that actually handrolling tobacco usually produces much thinner smokes and these, though often hard to keep lit are milder at least throughout half of their length.
Well anyway, Mark Ryan of D&R Tobacco, probably having grown sick of my incessant whining about handrollers, sent me a little gem, unannounced mind you, that has to a large degree changed my mind at least about the possibilities of hand rolling machines. Made by Rizla, it is designed for 100 mm or wider papers (which Mark included). I let it set on my desk for about a week until one day, during a fit of boredom where I found myself taping "Amazing Boogie Bass" commercials, I decided to give it a try. My assumption that rolling tobacco using the longer papers in a longer machine would be even more difficult than my previous attempts with normal-sized devices was not borne out by experiment. Hey, this thing really works! Not only did the little blue roller make a perfect long cigarette, but when smoked, the resulting stick offered a level of mildness I had never enjoyed before in a handrolled product. Time after time, I was able to roll perfect 100+ mm sticks about the diameter of a Virginia Slim and each time their flavor and mildness using a variety of tobaccos was striking.
In all seriousness, these kinds of machines all work pretty well but the added advantage, both mechanically and taste-wise, of the longer media make for a very nice smoke and a real alternative to taking injectors on trips and into the great outdoors. The orange blanket seems especially robust and grabs the paper when inserted very consistently. An added advantage is that you can roll practically any typed of tobacco in these, including ones that would jam an injector every time. I don't have a price on these guys but I suspect they are quite reasonable, under $10 certainly, and should survive a lot of rolling. They do especially well with long, fine cut halfzware blends. Whyntcha' try one and let us know what you think.
|EDITOR'S NOTE: These reviews are solely for the convenience of people of legal age who already smoke, are trying to cut down on smoking, wish to spend less money on their smoking, want to roll their own cigarettes from high quality tobacco, and, in general, wish to have a far more satisfying, and economical smoking experience when compared with smoking pre-manufactured cigarettes. We, in no way, encourage people to smoke. Further, we prescribe to a sane, more logical approach to smoking that involves common sense as to quantity coupled with a strong desire to manage the habit until it becomes an occasional, freely chosen, diversion, that can be fully enjoyed with minimal health risks. Finally, we strongly encourage those who do smoke to take it outdoors, or to appropriate environments where tobacco can be enjoyed away from those who do not smoke, most especially children. We do not sell tobacco or related products from this site; We distribute information about our perceptions of the quality of what is available and where it can be obtained. If you are under 18, it is illegal to buy tobacco and you should immediately exit this site. If you do not smoke, it would seem illogical to start.|
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