A high-end cigar is not a minor investment in both funds and enjoyment, so it’s a shame when one you’re looking forward to is ruined by a poor cigar cutter. A sub-par cutter can damage your cigar and thus, your smoking experience. To avoid this problem, it’s important to look into what best fits your needs to enjoy your experience to the fullest.
Determining Your Needs
Here we discuss the different cutting styles and functions to so you can determine which cigar cutters should be added to your collection. Read on to find out more.
When you think of a standard cigar cutter, a Guillotine cutter is likely what comes to mind. With a single blade, the guillotine removes the entire circumference of the cigar tip – also called the cap - allowing a good amount of smoke to pass through.
Guillotine colors are typically the most common cutters because they include the most inexpensive design of cutters available, the humble single-blade guillotine. While you can find some high-end single bladed cutters, they have a mostly low to mid-range price.
The guillotine style also includes the double bladed type, of which there are three basic styles: one that has a moving blade and a fixed blade, one has two moving blades using the thumb and forefinger, and one has two spring-loaded blades. Some of the more popular spring-loaded double blade types fit in the palm of the hand and have a locking feature for when the cutter is not in use, making for added safety and easy carrying. The double blade guillotine is a much more effective cutter than the single blade, since it utilizes two blades cutting from opposite sides, as opposed to the single blade, which cuts against a stable base and poses a greater risk of crushing the cigar.
The guillotine style requires a quick and precise motion which takes a little experience to perfect, but is the preferred method of cutting for most cigar smokers.
Guillotine cutters are finite in the circumference of cigars that they are able to cut, so if you prefer the larger 60 to 70 ring gauge cigars, be sure that the cutter will accommodate that size.
The v-shape cutter is a great option for the serious cigar smoker. It is designed to take just the right amount of tobacco from the cap for an ideal draw. Because of the way it is designed, the V-shape cutter actually cuts more deeply and exposes as much or more tobacco than the standard guillotine cut, and can be used on a variety of cigar shapes. However, it's important to consider this cutter an investment. If you are going to buy a v-shape cutter, opt for a pricier one as the cheaper models tend go dull rather quickly and are virtually impossible for a normal person to re-sharpen.
Unlike other cigar cutters, a punch cutter doesn't remove the entire surface area of a cigar. Instead, it removes a small circle of the cigar cap wide enough to draw smoke through. The punch uses a simple push and twist motion to cut through the cap.
This type of cutter is ideal for smaller or narrower cigars, but some smokers like to use it for the wider gordo type cigars that have become popular, as it offers a more restricted draw instead of the overly airy draw that a guillotine might produce. If a more open draw is desired, it’s a simple matter of punching more of the cap. It is not, however, a particularly good tool for a tapered figurado such as a torpedo.
Many of these cutters come in a bullet-shaped design which is attractive to many smokers, while some resemble large medicinal caplets in shape. Some also come with spring-loaded or static rods to push the tobacco plug from the cutter.
The punch has the same drawback as the v-cutter in that it is difficult to re-sharpen.
Cigar scissors are a slightly old school way to cut your cigar. With an elegant and sophisticated look, you'll commonly find this variation among seasoned cigar aficionados. These cutters often come with leather cases or other traveling accessories that add to its appeal, but what serious smokers like about it is that a good pair of cigar scissors can cut in much finer increments and angles that any other method, allowing for a customized cut to fit their preferences. Newer versions can fold to a compactness that allows for easy transport and can easily fit into one’s pocket, and some have other features that allow them to function as multi-tools. A finely manufactured pair with a keen sharpness and tight blade clearance is a must.
There only con would be that their design is not ideal for Figurado shapes, so if you're a torpedo fan you may want to keep looking.
Where to Buy Your Cigar Cutters
Don't damage a perfectly good cigar by using a faulty cigar cutter. Be sure to shop where only the best cigar cutters are available. And keep in mind that some manufacturers offer warrantees that allow you to send their cutters in for repair or sharpening. Having a complete collection of quality cigar accessories will take your experience to the next level.