Friday, August 1, 2008

More tips on seasoning your cigar humidor

By Gary Korb

In my previous posting I referenced an email from a reader who had questions about charging the humidifier with 50/50 wetting solution. Here's another message that addresses the issue of getting the humidity in the cigar humidor up to speed and when to put your cigars in:

"I got a brand new humidor. I am seasoning it by putting a small jar of distilled water in it with the humidifier charged, and my hygrometer that I have calibrated. Once the humidity reaches 68% to 72% humidity it says that the wood should be seasoned. My question is, can I put my cigars into the humidor or do I have to wait? For now, my cigars are in a big zip-locked bag."
- D.W.
With regard to using a small jar or shot glass filled with distilled water, many cigar smokers have told me they use this method to season their cigar humidors. The thing is, you'll get better and faster results by using a fresh kitchen sponge soaked with distilled water. Make sure the sponge is completely soaked but not dripping.

Place a baggie on the bottom of your new humidor, and put the sponge on top of it to prevent excess leakage from the sponge into the base of the box.

Close the lid and you'll have a virtual rainforest in there within a couple of days. If the box has a rally good seal, the hygrometer will very likely read in the high 80's. Remove the sponge, and let the humidor settle down to 70%.

There's also another method for seasoning your humidor worth considering. Boveda, makers of the Humidipaks you find in boxes Arturo Fuente cigars and others, have an 84% Seasoning Pack that you drop into your new humidor. Just note that it takes about 10 days to fully season the box with the Humidipak.

Always keep the cigars in the bag until the humidor has reached an acceptable RH level. Otherwise, the cigars will be soggy as all hell.

Finally, once you put your cigars in the humidor, make sure you have enough room between them for air circulation. They don't have to all be in neat rows like the factory boxes. Let some cigars lie over each other to give them some breathing room.

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