A cigar humidor is a box or a room that keeps constant humidity, used to store cigars, cigarettes, and pipe tobacco. Cigar humidors are made from one three types of wood: Spanish Cedar, American Red Cedar, or Honduran Mahogany. Spanish cedar, unlike the name suggests, does not originate from Spain. It comes out of the rain forests of Brazil and Central America.
Due to the fact that it is a rain forest species, it has a number of remarkable qualities. It holds humidity better than almost any other type of wood, and it has a scent that repels beetles—including tobacco beetles. It also does not warp like other kinds of wood do. Because it is a species of cedar, it has that same wonderful smell that other cedar species have which imparts an additional hint of aroma to cigars.
Many humidors are made from a case that is constructed from of solid wood. The interior is lined by with Spanish cedar. Some humidors are made entirely from Spanish cedar and require not interior lining. Other humidors are designed around what is called an MDF (medium density fiberboard) design. The exterior is a veneer made from a species of hardwood, such as cherry, and the interior is lined with a veneer of Spanish cedar.
Inside the humidor, there is a humidification system that consists of a 1:1 ratio of distilled water and Propylene Glycol. The PG keeps the relative humidity balanced. All cigar humidors rely on a hygrometer to keep track of humidity levels. The hygrometer measures RH to ensure that the interior of the cigar humidor maintains the correct humidity level. Correctly calibrating the hygrometer is a must to ensure proper operation of the humidification system.
Cigar humidors offer a number of benefits to cigars and cigar smokers. The most obvious of these is that they help keep the flavor and burn rate of the cigar to an optimal level. You see, if a cigar is too dry, it becomes fragile and burns too fast. If it is too damp, it burns unevenly and is characterized by an acidic and taste. In order to burn at just the right rate, and in order for it to taste as intended, the cigar must absorb humidity at 14% of its own rate. To achieve this rate of absorption, the interior of the humidor must have a relative humidity of 68%-74%.
People often wonder just how many types of humidors there are. Actually, cigar humidors only fall into basic design categories like anything else. These four different types of humidors are listed as follows:
1. Table humidor- This type of humidor is common in cigar stores and remains in one place. It can hold up to a few thousand cigars
2. Travel humidor- This is the smallest type of humidor. It is portable and can hold 10-40 cigars
3. Personal humidor- This type is slightly larger than the travel size, holds 30-100 cigars, and is kept in the home or in the office.
4. Room humidor- This is an entire room that has been converted into a humidor and is found in larger cigar stores and cigar smoking bars.