Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Humidor Issues

Have you ever lit up a cigar and had the wrapper start to unravel on you, or maybe notice a little cracking on either end of the stick? Well, you're not alone. At first I thought I was continually buying crappy cigars, but as it turned out I actually have a crappy humidor. No wait, it couldn't be the humidor, I have a really nice one($$). Could it be the "operator"?  Ah, of course...

The Quick Fix

First, I needed an easier way to measure the RH/relative humidity in my humidor - my old analog hygrometer works, but for some reason I never check it. Huhn? What's up with that? So while I was over in Georgetown the other day, I stopped by Rain City Cigars and picked up a Xicar digital display hygrometer - it'll measure both the RH percentage and the temperature. Exactly what I'm looking for!

When I got home that night, I placed my brand-spanking-new hygrometer inside the humidor, waited a few hours, then took a look. How embarrassing - that box was basically bone-dry. JEEZus! It would need to be re-seasoned/recharged, whatever you call it, but in the meantime I needed a quick fix for my sticks!

Step Two - Bóveda Humidipaks

Surprisingly I didn't see these over at Rain City, but the Tobacco Patch in Kirkland has just about everything, including a couple of varieties of the Bóveda, so I picked up some of the 72% RH bags. Now since my humidor was almost bone dry, it wouldn't really do me any good to just throw these bags into the humidor and shut the lid, no, my humidor would need more attention than that, so in the meantime time I placed all my cigars into a BIG Ziploc bag along with two Bóveda humidpak and put them to bed.

The next day I take a look at the digital display on the hygrometer that I had placed inside the bag: 70% RH and 67º degrees. WOW!

These humidipaks were made for idiots like me. No mess, no measuring, no brains required, just change them every couple of months (or when they dry out) and you're good to go. What could be easier?

Side note: You're probably wondering what I used for humidification before this? Well, I had a couple of those green foam thingamabobs that are enclosed in a round plastic case. I would add the 50/50 solution of distilled water and Propylene Glycol religiously, but my biggest downfall was not trusting my analog hygrometer, which as it turns out works perfectly; calibrated it the other day.

My new motto: "Always trust your instruments"


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