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Weed Measurements: The Marijuana Metric System

Source: Greenito.com

Do you tell your budtender just to give you $20, $50, or $100 worth of weed without knowing how much actual medicine you’re getting for your money? Have you ever felt embarrassed when your budtender asks if you want a dub or an eighth because you have no @#!$ing idea what they are talking about?

Does the world stop making sense when your budtender tells you how much an ounce of your favorite strain costs? It’s ok, you’re not alone. We’ve all been there.

Many people who are green to buying grass have felt this way at one point or another. That’s because weed measurements are messed up.

There, we said it! Weed measurements are messed up. Whew, feels good to get that off our chest. Seems like someone should reform this particular speed bump in canna-culture. But, honestly, the marijuana metric system has been around for so long that it’s going to be nearly impossible to change. Better just to get used to it.

That’s why the experts at Honest Marijuana have produced this instructional article—to help you make sense of the various standard amounts that you’ll find in your local dispensary. That way, you don’t have to look like a total newb when you make your first buy. Weed measurements no longer need to be a mystery!

Source: Pinterest.com

Along the way, we’ll also:

  • Explain all the ganja jargon commonly used among cannabis users in the United States.
  • Break down some regional pot prices by size so you can make sure you’re not getting ripped off by your reefer retailer.
  • Establish some cannabis concentrate conversions so you know roughly how much marijuana it takes to make butter for concentrates, edibles , oil , and tinctures .

If you want to become an expert in marijuana measurement, read this guide from start to finish. If you’ve come here looking for something specific, we’ll help you find it. Follow these links to each section of the article:

And don’t feel bad if you don’t get it all down on the first try. It may take a while to understand all the conversions and jargon. But with a little practice, you’ll be talking like a long-time stoner in no time.

Marijuana Measurement Madness

Most Americans are used to measuring things with the United States’ Customary Units as opposed to the International System of Units , better known as the Metric System.

Indeed, one of the most confusing things about purchasing and consuming cannabis in the United States is that we use a combination of international metrics and US units to describe the quantities of cannabis we use in our everyday lives.

Source: Etsy.com

Ounces and pounds are examples of US Customary Units that we borrowed from the British before General Washington’s hemp-clad continental army won our nation’s independence.

Source: Leafly.com

The gram , a measurement of mass from the International System of Units, originally referred to the weight of a cubic centimeter of water. A gram is now more simply defined as one one-thousandth of a kilogram , which is the current base unit of the international metric system.

The general confusion and vague jargon that every single cannabis consumer has to comprehend in order to keep track of how much medicine they buy and use is the result of the discrepancies between international and U.S. scientific measurement systems.

That’s why weed measurements are so confusing: they are a mix of two different measurement systems. It’s like watching a movie that starts off as a rom-com and then suddenly changes to a horror movie about twenty minutes in. At the end, you’re left scratching your head and wondering what the hell just happened.

But it doesn’t stop there. Even if you understand the whole grams-ounces-pound thing, you still have to contend with the long list of slang terms that have come and gone over the years.

In the next section, we’ll clarify the conversion between grams and ounces and introduce you to the corresponding ganja jargon.

Ganja Jargon for Measuring Weed

Source: Forum.Grasscity.com

There’s a lot of marijuana slang floating around out there. For the most part, though, it all revolves around a few choice terms. Your budtender will typically refer to their Mary Jane by the following names:

  • Dime
  • Dub
  • Eighth
  • Quarter
  • Half
  • Ounce
  • Full O (or just O)
  • Z (yes, just the letter Z)

Here’s the definition of each.

Dime & Dub

A dime bag or a dub sack of weed is stoner slang for $10- or $20-worth of weed respectively. The amount of weed you’ll actually get in exchange for $10-$20 varies wildly depending upon where in the country (or the world) you’re buying your pot.

Eighth, Quarter, Half

The terms Eighth, Quarter, and Half are slang for portions of an ounce of pot. Here are the gram-to-ounce equivalents:

  • An Eighth = 3.5 grams
  • A Quarter = 7 grams
  • A Half = 14 grams

Ounce, Full O, Z

“Ounce” isn’t a slang term, but “Full O” and “Z” certainly are! A Full O (or just O) and a Z refer to a full ounce (or 28 grams) of marijuana. An ounce is also the most marijuana that a resident of Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington can legally possess in public.

“Full O” is fairly self-explanatory (short for full ounce), but you may be wondering where in the wide weed world the term “Z” came from. As with most cannabis slang , the exact origins of the word are lost in the pot haze of time.

Most long-time stoners agree, though, that they — or their canna-forefathers (and foremothers) — used the term as a sort of code so they didn’t have to say ounce directly.

“Why couldn’t they say ounce?” you ask. Well, remember, not so long ago, weed was lumped together with a host of really nasty drugs like heroin and crack. Most of these were sold in increments that included the ounce.

So, if you were overheard asking to buy an ounce, there was a pretty good chance you were looking to score an illegal substance. Hence the need for a code word like “Z.”

But why “Z” and not “R” or “J” or something else entirely? Again, we don’t know for sure, but the consensus usually falls into one of two camps, with the second being the most common.

  1. “Z” refers to the final letter in the abbreviation for the word ounce (i.e., oz.). Sounds good, right? Still, it does seem like a bit of a stretch. The next explanation feels a lot more likely.
  2. Back in the day, we didn’t have the cool packaging we have now. A glass jar was a bit cumbersome and prone to break should a sky-high stoner drop it or fall down. To avoid this danger, buds and other marijuana products were often sold in plastic baggies. When Ziploc bags came on the market, it was only natural that cannaseurs would use them to keep their weed fresh. And by a stroke of good fortune, an ounce of marijuana would fit nicely (most of the time) in these containers. See where we’re going? So if you wanted to buy an ounce of pot, you could say, “I’d like to purchase a Ziploc baggie of your finest marijuana product, good sir.” Or you could just say, “Gimme a Z, man.” Which would you choose? Yeah, us too.

Homework

We hate homework too, but there’s a reason schools have been doling out take-home assignments since the dawn of time — it works. Practice — though it won’t make perfect — does make better. And that’s all we really care about here: improving the way we buy weed.

One of the best ways to do that — to get a grip on the marijuana metric system — is to measure amounts for yourself at home.

And when you think about it, this type of homework isn’t nearly as bad as memorizing multiplication tables (some of us still can’t remember the product of 8×7) because it involves everyone’s favorite topic: dating Mary Jane.

Plus, we actually suggest that you burn a blunt before tackling this homework and then treat yourself to a pizza when you’re done.

You might even want to incorporate weed measurements into your next toke sesh with friends. Guessing what weighs what would make an entertaining game to play before, during, and after the smoke circle.

But, hey, do what you want. There’re no hard or fast rules for this homework. You won’t even be graded. You will, however, be judged by those around you which can be the harshest grade of all.

What You’ll Need

You will need some supplies for this, so plan accordingly.

  • Food scale
  • Marijuana substitute
  • Seven bowls for separating your stash
  • Measuring spoons (we’re just using these to scoop small amounts so don’t worry about trying to convert from grams our ounces to teaspoons)

Food scales are cheap and easy to find, and you can probably find a suitable model at your local market. As a bonus, once you’re finished practicing your weed measurements, you can use the scale to weigh your food.

Be sure to purchase a model that allows you to switch between ounces and grams.

As for the marijuana substitute, we prefer oregano for its symbolic value in cannabis history and culture.

Honestly, you don’t need a marijuana substitute if you’ve got a lot of the real thing lying around. But be warned, we will be weighing out 4 ounces (¼ pound), so you’ll need at least that much to get through the assignment.

Now you see why we suggest a substitute? A quarter-pound of weed purchased all at one time will run you anywhere from $400 to $800 (check local listings). A quarter-pound of oregano purchased at your local market will run you less than $2. The choice is obvious to us.

Assignment

  1. Set your food scale to grams. If your model doesn’t offer this feature, you’re stuck with ounces. Don’t worry. We’ll make due.
  2. Reset the scale to zero by pressing “tare.”
  3. Scoop or sprinkle a small amount of plant matter (marijuana or equivalent substitute) onto the scale until you reach 0.5 grams (0.017 or 0.018 ounces). It won’t take much.
  4. Dump this amount into one of your seven bowls.
  5. Reset the scale.
  6. Add plant matter to the scale until it read 1 gram (0.035 ounces).
  7. Dump this amount into another bowl.
  8. Compare the two amounts.
  9. These are the most common gram units you’ll find in the marijuana metric system so try and get an eye for their relative size.
  10. Set your food scale to ounces.
  11. Reset to zero.
  12. Scoop plant matter onto your scale until it reads 0.125 ounces (3.5 grams).
  13. This is an eighth of weed.
  14. Dump it into another bowl.
  15. Reset your scale.
  16. Pile on enough plant matter to take the scale to 0.25 ounces (7 grams).
  17. This is a quarter (of an ounce).
  18. Dump it into another bowl.
  19. Reset your scale.
  20. Measure out 0.5 ounces (14 grams).
  21. Dump it into your fifth bowl.
  22. Reset your scale.
  23. Measure out 1.0 ounces (28 grams).
  24. This is, as you might guess, an ounce, an “O”, or a “Z”.
  25. Dump that into your sixth bowl.
  26. Reset your scale.
  27. Now, just for fun, measure out 2.0 ounces (56 grams or ¼ pound).
  28. Dump that into your seventh bowl.
  29. Stand back and visually compare each amount.
  30. Repeat the process for even more practice.

Being able to visually recognize the general size of a pile of weed — even if it’s not exact — makes buying it even easier.

When you think you’ve got the size of each pile in your head, try this test:

  1. Weigh one of your bowls on the scale.
  2. Remove the bowl and reset the scale.
  3. Pick an amount of weed you want to try to measure (let’s say, an eighth of an ounce).
  4. Pour what you think is that amount into the bowl.
  5. Place the bowl on the scale.
  6. Subtract the weight of the bowl from the new reading.
  7. That number is how much plant matter is in the bowl.

Did you get close to the number you were trying to measure? Try it again with another amount.

Endo-Weed Economics

Asking for a dime usually means you are asking for $10-worth of cannabis . This amount of cannabis (often 0.5g) is usually just enough weed to roll into a decent-sized joint. That said, it is becoming increasingly rare to find so-called “ dime-bag dealers ” who will sell such a small amount of sinsemilla .

Source: Quickmeme.com

Asking for a dub usually means you are asking for a full gram of cannabis. One gram of weed is what you’ll typically find in a single blunt or cigar leaf joint. You can expect to pay $20 for a dub of weed in major cities in the Midwest and along the eastern seaboard (Chicago all the way to Boston).

However, Harrison Tesoura Schultz, co-founder of Occupy Weed Street, has paid up to $50 for a single gram of pot from delivery services in New York City.

Anything less than 1.5 grams for $20 was a rip off in Oregon prior to July 8, 2014, when recreational cannabis became available for sale. Now it’s common to get 3.5 grams or “an eighth” of high-quality cannabis for $20 in Oregon.

Source: Ryot.org

The cost of an ounce of weed will vary widely according to the quality and popularity of the strain , of course. However, regulating and taxing marijuana drives down the price of pot and helps cannabis consumers save lots of money.

A high-quality ounce of weed typically costs between $200 and $245 where recreational reefer use is legal in California, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington. An ounce of pot costs comparatively more in states where marijuana hasn’t been legalized yet. Cannabis costs close to $300 per ounce in Florida, nearly $360 in New York, and just over $350 per ounce in Illinois, according to priceofweed.com .

The price for an ounce of pot is the basis of the prices for the other common portions of weed that are typically sold. For example, the best deal you’ll find in New York City (a.k.a. the marijuana arrest capital of the world) is $45 for an eighth of an ounce ($360 divided by 8).

You can purchase the same amount of high-quality cannabis for as little as $25 (or less) in certain cities in Oregon.

Source: Hempbeach.com

Purchasing a small electronic scale is the best way to make sure that you’re not paying more than you should be for pot. It’s also the most accurate way to measure your doses of medicinal marijuana. You can get a sense of how much you can expect to pay for pot in your part of the world from priceofweed.com, a global database of crowdsourced cannabis prices.

We highly recommend reporting any really good (and really bad) deals you get on your medicine to that same website. This will help control the market and make the average price of marijuana more affordable.

Cannabis Concentrate Measurements

It’s typical to produce about two to six grams of dabs or butane hash oil ( wax ) from a full ounce, or 28 grams, of ganja. Vaporizable cannabis concentrates can cost anywhere between $20 (if you’re lucky) up to $100 per gram.

Source: Leafly.com

An ounce of pot will also produce about three to four grams of the same cannabis oil that Rick Simpson used to save himself and thousands of other medical marijuana patients from terminal cancer.

Colorado residents can buy Rick Simpson oil for $25 dollars a gram from legal dispensaries, such as Caregivers for Life.

Source: Sorendreier.com

You can make way more cannabutter than you would ever want to eat in a single weed edible serving with an ounce of weed depending on how well you can make it.

Most marijuana users make their own cannabutter , but you can buy a 1.5-ounce jar of high-quality cannabutter from top THC chef Julie Dooley for $35-$30 dollars.

Source: Patients4medicalmarijuana.wordpress.com

An eighth of an ounce of high-quality cannabis produces about 30-34 doses of marijuana tincture if you make it yourself, and a small bottle of about 100 drops costs around $20 dollars.

Making the Marijuana Math Make Sense

Source: Quickmeme.com

Is the marijuana math adding up? You should be able to calculate that Snoop Dogg is smoking not quite three (2.89) ounces of cannabis a day since he says he smokes 81 blunts every day, given that 1 blunt equals about 1 gram and there are 28 grams in one full ounce of marijuana.

It is entirely possible that Snoop has smoked nearly an entire ton of cannabis over the course of his life if we take his estimate as accurate.

Source: Tubmlr.com

The marijuana metric system is a confusing class of Standard International Units and US Customary units. But when you boil it all down, the main cannabis conversion you need to remember is:

  • 1 ounce of weed = 28 grams

From there, it’s pretty easy to decipher the ganja jargon to calculate that “a half” equals 14 grams, “a quarter” equals 7 grams, an eighth equals 3.5 gram, and “a dub” will typically equal one full gram of marijuana.

Once you know how to do the math, you can determine if making your own marijuana concentrates, oils, edibles, and tinctures will help you save on cannabis costs based upon the price of weed in your area.

Make sure to support legalization efforts on behalf of groups such as NORML and the Marijuana Policy Project if you want to help make marijuana increasingly more affordable for yourself and your community.

Need help deciphering the common weed measurements? The experts at Honest Marijuana explain the marijuana metric system so you can buy your pot like a pro.

How Much Weed Costs and How Much to Buy

So you’re going to get some weed. Hooray! But wait… how much should you get? How many joints would that be? How much will that jar or bag of buds cost? How much does the average person consume per day, anyway? All reasonable questions, which we’re here to help answer.

This guide will give you some reference points on how much weed to buy during your next Colorado weedcation, and it’ll give you a good idea of how much you’ll pay for your stash. No one wants to overpay for pot and then have so much extra they leave it behind. Be sure to have a plan for traveling with your stash safely!

Table of contents

Gram or 8th: Buying Weed Samples
How Expensive is a Quarter: Weed for Strain Variety
How Much is a Half Ounce: Price Breaks on Weed
How Much Does it Cost to Buy an Ounce of Weed?
THC Bang for Your Buck
High-CBD Hemp Flower: Weed Without the High
Frequently Asked Questions About the Cost of Weed
Quick Weed Weight & Price Guide:
What is the price of weed?
How much is an ounce of weed?
How much does a gram cost?
How much does 3.5 grams of weed cost?
How much does 7 grams of weed cost?
How much does 14 grams of weed cost?

Gram or 8th: Buying Weed Samples

If you’re new to a strain, a gram or an eighth (3.5 grams, an 8 th of an ounce) would make a perfect test sample (Read our article on the normal weights to buy Cannabis). For reference, dispensary pre-rolls typically weigh in at a gram. Grams will cost anywhere from $5-15 and are the least efficient from a cost perspective, though they’re good for trying a strain before you commit to that full ounce.

If you’re looking to give a strain a couple tries and get a real feel for it over several sessions, we recommend an 8 th . It’s the most common weight purchased by most cannabis consumers due to its affordability and convenience.

The price of an eighth can vary greatly around the country, but they generally range from $25-$55 in Colorado and West Coast, to upwards of $60 on the East Coast. Most people will be happily buzzed on a budget of 1-2 grams per day. I’ve tested it, and you can even fit a full eighth of cannabis or raw organic hemp flower inside a safety case.

How Expensive is a Quarter: Weed for Strain Variety

A quarter is 1/4 of an ounce and weighs 7 grams. Quarters typically range from $50 to $80 in legal markets with premiums in prohibition states that can exceed $120 in some areas.

If you like having different strains on hand – like sativa in the morning and indica in the evening and maybe even some Raw Hemp Flower or CBD Kief (for varied effects) – this quantity is perfect for keeping a good sized stash on hand without going overboard. Minor price breaks can sometimes be seen at a quarter (depending on the specific dispensary or caregiver), but don’t expect them. Note that price breaks refer to price per gram as opposed to total cost.

How Much is a Half Ounce: Price Breaks on Weed

Weighing in at 14 grams, this quantity is where you’ll start to see more substantial price breaks. Half ounces generally cost between $90 and $160 in dispensaries. Once again, pricing is typically higher in areas where no legal market exists.

We recommend buying at this quantity if you’re a heavier smoker or have a high tolerance. It might be a good idea to keep some Raw Hemp Flower from a trusted source like Canna Comforts on hand to ‘extend’ the life of your cannabis. It’s much less expensive and runs around $30 for an eighth. It’s legal to buy Hemp Flower online and have mailed to you.

If the dispensary lets you mix and match the eighths of cannabis that comprise the half ounce (some do, but again, don’t expect it. Just ask your budtender), you’ll get a nice balance of affordability and strain variety.

How Much Does it Cost to Buy an Ounce of Weed?

Looking for the most for your money? Get ready to shell out for an ounce. This is the legal limit one person can purchase in many legal markets. Most dispensaries have ounce specials that range between $100 and $300. Almost any caregiver or dispensary is going to offer an ounce special in some capacity, and the price per gram is much lower than it would be in smaller quantities.

THC Bang for Your Buck

Additionally, some dispensaries will let you mix and match strains in eighth or quarter quantities that, when combined, weigh an ounce. This is the smart quantity to purchase if you’re a heavy consumer, and it’s also a great way to stock up the entire smoking circle.

High-CBD Hemp Flower: Weed Without the High

Even if you don’t live in a legal state, you can still reap the benefits of whole-plant, full-spectrum cannabinoids with raw organic hemp flower. We like Canna Comforts because they produce effective, enjoyable products that meet our CBD Buyer’s Guide criteria for safety, potency, and efficacy.

We especially enjoy the strains Lifter (shown below) and Special Sauce (add a sprinkle of Elektra kief for even more powerful symptom relief), but Canna Comforts‘ diverse collection of hemp flower strains ensures there’s an option for every need. Smoking hemp flower induces fast-acting relief from a broad range of symptoms in an enjoyable, natural, truly whole-plant form.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Cost of Weed

On the off chance you still have some unanswered questions about weed pricing, we’ve put together this handy FAQ section where you can quickly learn the answer. Keep in mind, that prices vary due to quality, availability, and many other factors.

Quick Weed Weight & Price Guide:

Weed Measurement Weight In Grams Price Range:
1 gram weed 1 gram $3 – $15+
1 eighth ounce weed 3.543 grams $25 – $55
1 quarter ounce weed 7.087 grams $50 – $80
1 half ounce weed 14.175 grams $90 – $160
1 ounce weed 28.345 grams $100 – $300

What is the price of weed?

The answer to this question varies based on how much you buy. Typically, the price per gram of weed decreases as you buy more quantity. Meaning a single gram of cannabis can range from $3-$15+ depending on whether you’re buying by the gram or by the ounce.

How much is an ounce of weed?

Also known as a zip, an ounce of cannabis typically costs between $100 and $300+.

How much does a gram cost?

A gram of weed costs between $5 and $15+.

How much does 3.5 grams of weed cost?

Also known as an eighth, 3.5g of cannabis costs between $25-$55 in Colorado and the West Coast, to upwards of $60 on the East Coast.

How much does 7 grams of weed cost?

Also known as a quarter, 7 grams of cannabis costs between $50 to $80 in legal markets with premiums in prohibition states that can exceed $120 in some areas.

How much does 14 grams of weed cost?

Also known as a half ounce, 14 grams of cannabis costs between $90 and $160 in legal dispensaries.

This guide will give you some reference points on how much weed to buy during your dispensary visit, as well as how much you'll pay for your stash.