Beginner questions

HrycajHrycaj Posts: 62 ✭✭
Sorry about repeats- couldn't find much when I searched...

i just got the 10 stick sampler w/ humidor (starter set IV) but previously dabled exclusively with liquor store/ gas station inexpensive varieties.

1. Do you leave the cigars in the plastic that single sticks ship in when storing a few in a humidor?

2. I have a cheap-o cutter with a straight blade and a blade that is v shaped. There a proper time to use one vs the other? I just started using the v shape across the board and think I prefer it.

3. The golden mahogany humidor from the kit has a sheet mentioning a hygrometer but I don't see one included. Was the box supposed to have one and how inportant is a hygrometer in a home humidor generally?

4. I tried once before to get serious with cigars. That was A few years back and they stressed using matches or maybe cedar to light instead of lighters. I saw the abundance of lighters for sale here and wondered if that's still the case.

im looking forward to learning a lot and continuing to enjoy cigars for a long while! Thanks in advance!



Comments

  • Usaf06Usaf06 FloridaPosts: 7,767 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Hrycaj said:
    Sorry about repeats- couldn't find much when I searched...

    i just got the 10 stick sampler w/ humidor (starter set IV) but previously dabled exclusively with liquor store/ gas station inexpensive varieties.

    1. Do you leave the cigars in the plastic that single sticks ship in when storing a few in a humidor?

    2. I have a cheap-o cutter with a straight blade and a blade that is v shaped. There a proper time to use one vs the other? I just started using the v shape across the board and think I prefer it.

    3. The golden mahogany humidor from the kit has a sheet mentioning a hygrometer but I don't see one included. Was the box supposed to have one and how inportant is a hygrometer in a home humidor generally?

    4. I tried once before to get serious with cigars. That was A few years back and they stressed using matches or maybe cedar to light instead of lighters. I saw the abundance of lighters for sale here and wondered if that's still the case.

    im looking forward to learning a lot and continuing to enjoy cigars for a long while! Thanks in advance!



    1. The cellophane is a preference. I leave it on to protect my stash. It won't affect the humidity 

    2. Straight cut vs V cut is also a personal preference 

    3. A hygrometer is a necessity. I recommend getting a digital one. There is YouTube videos to show how to make sure it is calibrated. If your humidor came with a circular puck to add distilled water throw it out and get some Xikar crystals or boveda packs.

    4. Most people use lighters but make sure it is a lighter that uses butane.
    "I drink a great deal. I sleep a little, and I smoke cigar after cigar. That is why I am in two-hundred-percent form."
    -- Winston Churchill
  • peter4jcpeter4jc Milwaukee, WIPosts: 6,632 ✭✭✭✭✭
    1) The cellophane - "cello" - can be left on the individual sticks.  Some take it off, but the cello breathes and affords some protection of the cigar's wrapper, so most leave it on.

    2) It's a matter of preference, as long as the cutter is sharp enough to not tear the wrapper.  Sometimes, with a torpedo/figurado, you can't cut far enough down the taper to get a good draw so you'd resort to the straight cutter.  Consider a Xikar cutter when you feel like upgrading - they stay sharp and have a lifetime warranty.  Colibri cutters are 'meh' but their new V-cutter is very nice.

    3) It would be odd if your climate was so perfect that you could go w/o a hygrometer.  The ones that come with those humidors are useless anyway, so if it's missing, no biggie.  Look for a digital hygrometer, and be sure to calibrate it, either with the salt test, or a Boveda calibration kit.  The really cheap and the better hygrometers come preset and can't be adjusted, but you can still test them every year or two to insure they're accurate.  For humidifcation, don't use that green sponge that was probably in your new humidor - Boveda packs (get enough so you can leave some in with the cigars while you're recharging the other packs) or Heartfelt beads are two-way humidification in that they'll absorb moisture when it's too high and give off moisture when it's too low.

    4) Matches are OK, just let them burn past the head so you're not sucking sulfur.  Cedar spills are fun, but not the easiest way to get an even light across the whole foot.  Butane lighters are best - the old lighter fluid imparts an off-flavor - you'll probably wind up with one lighter with multiple torches for lighting, and a single torch for touching up wonky burn lines.  Some of us like a soft flame (as opposed to torch) for lighting our sticks, but either will work - you just want to char the foot first before drawing through it to preheat the tobacco which will help get an even light when you're actually drawing on it and lighting it.  Avoid overheating the cigar while lighting.

    Hope that helps.
    "I could've had a Mi Querida!"   Nick Bardis
  • WaterNerdWaterNerd Southern CaliforniaPosts: 2,275 ✭✭✭✭✭
    @Hrycaj Welcome to the forum  :) 
    Don't find fault, find a remedy; anybody can complain
    — Henry Ford
  • WaterNerdWaterNerd Southern CaliforniaPosts: 2,275 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I also purchase the starter set. Good little humidor with a nice selection of cigars. You will outgrow the humidor pretty quick so I would start looking for something bigger (lots of info on the forum on this topic)

    I added humidity beads to mine and have had no problems with the humidity level. You will need to get a nice hygrometer. Lots of good ones out there. I purchased a unit that is wireless so I have the base unit on my night stand so can see what the temp/humidity is in the box without opening it (PM me if you want the link to it).

    I use a punch cutter but suggest you try all of them to see what you like

    This is a great forum to be on. Lots of great people on here. Enjoy!

    Don't find fault, find a remedy; anybody can complain
    — Henry Ford
  • NolagizmoNolagizmo Nola, LA.Posts: 1,917 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Welcome Hrycaj. Looks like a few other guys already answered your questions. Look forward to seeing you around. This is a great lifestyle/hobby. There are some amazing brothers of the leaf here on this forum. Stick around and you will probably meet some great folks.

    I encourage you to find the newbie welcoming thread and introduce yourself.
    "Come party with me in Tennessee for my birthday July we can smoke in the Smokey's."
  • genareddoggenareddog South eastern indianaPosts: 2,722 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Welcome @hrycaj. This forum is great and you will learn a lot. Ask a lot of questions. Little advice, reinforce your mailbox!
  • HrycajHrycaj Posts: 62 ✭✭
    Many thanks across the board!

    My humidor came with one extra piece that too me looks like divider piece.  It fits across the box perpendicularly and dips in the middle.  Is that just the divider or do people prop cigars up against that?  Is it okay to stack the cigars on one another?  They talk about a humidor's max capacity being TOO full but whats an ok top end on a 40 stick box?

    Genareddog - Is the mailbox re-enforcing due to all the stuff Im going to end up buying to try?! Good reason for it!
  • WylaffWylaff Reno, NVPosts: 4,580 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yes.
    "Cooking isn't about struggling; It's about pleasure. It's like sǝx, with a wider variety of sauces."

    I hate myself, and I don't regret any of it.

  • genareddoggenareddog South eastern indianaPosts: 2,722 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Hrycaj said:
    Many thanks across the board!

    My humidor came with one extra piece that too me looks like divider piece.  It fits across the box perpendicularly and dips in the middle.  Is that just the divider or do people prop cigars up against that?  Is it okay to stack the cigars on one another?  They talk about a humidor's max capacity being TOO full but whats an ok top end on a 40 stick box?

    Genareddog - Is the mailbox re-enforcing due to all the stuff Im going to end up buying to try?! Good reason for it!
    Yes and then some
  • HrycajHrycaj Posts: 62 ✭✭
    Bigshizza, will do. 

    Also for all- I got a hygrometer after the importance was made clear. I calibrated it with the salt test and find it reads 10 points low. Regardless I will use it a while. Question becomes, if the salt mash in a bottle cap is supposed to create the balanced 75% humid environment, why is some salt cap system not the go to day-to-day method for a humidor?
  • onestrangeoneonestrangeone Austin, TxPosts: 2,444 ✭✭✭✭✭
     75rh is a bit high for storage for most people, also the salt test is not 100% reliable in that there is a fair amount of room for user error, If you get the salt to wet you don't get 75rh
  • kswildcatkswildcat Posts: 1,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I suggest heartfelt beads or boveda for humidity. Still need a hygrometer but either of the 2 is well worth the piece of mind. If you out grow the humi  (and you will) cooler to me is your best bet. Welcome to the forum
  • HrycajHrycaj Posts: 62 ✭✭
    edited January 2016
    Anybody got a laymen's guide to body. I see the concept of mild to full body and the way I've seen it explained is in terms of intensity. I see too that flavor is independent. Issue is what I "feel" and would call body is not always the grade given in reviews
  • WylaffWylaff Reno, NVPosts: 4,580 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Cigars are extremely subjective. Body as well as taste has a lot to do with personal tastes, diet, ect...
    "Cooking isn't about struggling; It's about pleasure. It's like sǝx, with a wider variety of sauces."

    I hate myself, and I don't regret any of it.

  • RhamlinRhamlin WVPosts: 7,301 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Body and flavor  are completely separate things. Body refers to the "strength of a cigar" which is pretty much how much nicotine it has. And one thing about the cheapo cutters is they get dull fast you can prolong the life span by cleaning them with alcohol when they stop cutting as cleanly. Especially that V cutter those can just tear up a cigar when they get dull. 
  • HrycajHrycaj Posts: 62 ✭✭
    What do people have against Alec Bradley and Rockey Patel? I just revisited the prensado and decade and liked both (again/still).

    does the devil site have affiliation to cigar.com/ cigar international? They ship from a really really similar area...
  • Lee.mcglynnLee.mcglynn HahahahaaaaaPosts: 5,993 ✭✭✭✭
    Hrycaj said:
    What do people have against Alec Bradley and Rockey Patel? I just revisited the prensado and decade and liked both (again/still).

    does the devil site have affiliation to cigar.com/ cigar international? They ship from a really really similar area...
    Your actually smoking the only ones most people will. Go outside those lines and find out
    Money can't buy taste
  • kswildcatkswildcat Posts: 1,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I had a prensado awhile back and gave up on it the first 3rd.. I was driving but it smoked horribly.  I may try another sometime when not occupied but do not have my hopes up. 
  • PatrickbrickPatrickbrick Lake Zurich IlPosts: 5,053 ✭✭✭✭✭
    devils site and ci are sisters, no affiliation with ccom however.  every ones tastes are different, mine don't like RP, also they seem to have construction issues.
    "We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give".  Winston Churchill.
    MOW badge received.
  • HrycajHrycaj Posts: 62 ✭✭
    That's the bummer with quickly judging lines that might produce hit or miss sticks I guess or with the individuality found in a handmade product. If one is only able to smoke a single it doesn't give the brand or line a chance to redeem itself the same as when someone can experience a fiver. More proof you people know what you're talking about with the previous suggestion to buy a few to try under a variety of circumstances!
  • kswildcatkswildcat Posts: 1,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I have a couple nico puro that I haven't tried yet. I have nothing against AB yet.

    I've smoked a few RP and not impressed .  To many better stogies  out there to mess with em 


  • jarublajarubla Posts: 2,328 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I am probably way wrong here, but I thought devil site, CI, P&C, and Ccom were all owned by Swedish Match (who also owns General Cigar and a bunch of other stuff).

    Can anyone advise on that point?
    “There’ll be two dates on your tombstone and all your friends will read ’em but all that’s gonna matter is that little dash between ’em.” -Kevin Welch
  • WylaffWylaff Reno, NVPosts: 4,580 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I like most AB, but RP has too many lines to try in hopes of a good one. And their biggest problem is that they were known for good sticks, and "someone" decided to go and re-blend them. So the old favorites where not what they used to be.

    Devil/CI are the same. Ccom is separate, but they share a warehouse.
    "Cooking isn't about struggling; It's about pleasure. It's like sǝx, with a wider variety of sauces."

    I hate myself, and I don't regret any of it.

  • ShawnOLShawnOL Near BostonPosts: 890 ✭✭✭✭✭
    OK, I gotta ask.  What/who is devil site?  Whomever it/they are, it would be good to know who the other company that's owned by CI is.

    Also, anybody know anything about AB's White Gold line?  It seems to be going dirt cheap compared to their other lines.  Is it machine made scrap filler or just bad?
  • WylaffWylaff Reno, NVPosts: 4,580 ✭✭✭✭✭
    They're not bad, they are very mild though. My wife smokes them.
    "Cooking isn't about struggling; It's about pleasure. It's like sǝx, with a wider variety of sauces."

    I hate myself, and I don't regret any of it.

  • ShawnOLShawnOL Near BostonPosts: 890 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I see.  Pretty much more smoke than flavor? Thanks.
  • WylaffWylaff Reno, NVPosts: 4,580 ✭✭✭✭✭
    There's some flavor. They wouldn't be bad for breakfast. They are damn near nicotine free though.
    "Cooking isn't about struggling; It's about pleasure. It's like sǝx, with a wider variety of sauces."

    I hate myself, and I don't regret any of it.

  • jlmartajlmarta 50 miles from ParadisePosts: 7,108 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Wylaff said:
    I like most AB, but RP has too many lines to try in hopes of a good one. And their biggest problem is that they were known for good sticks, and "someone" decided to go and re-blend them. So the old favorites are not what they used to be.

    @Wylaff has it right. When I first got into cigars, RP had a number of really good blends. He also owned (owns?) Indian Tabac which had a blend called Fire that I thought was absolutely great. I loved 'em. 

    So, right off the bat, he discontinued Fire. Then he started dinking around with other blends and pretty much screwed 'em up. A good example is the Vintage 1990/Vintage 1992/Fusion fiasco. I think he's left the 1990 alone for some unknown reason... they're still pretty good. 

    But at first there was the Vintage 1990. It was quite good. So then, he used the filler and binder from the 1990, put a different wrapper on it, and called it the Vintage 1992. It, too, was pretty good. 

    Then, he added the wrapper from the 1992 to the original 1990 giving it a double wrapper and called it the Fusion. And it, also, was pretty darned good. Then he started dinking around.....

    The 1992 has been re-blended, (who knows how many times?) as has the Fusion. Neither comes anywhere near being as good as they once were. 

    I still ill buy the 1990 occasionally but none of his other multitudinous blends. You'd think he considers himself another Gurkha genius....  B)




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