Whole Leaf Tobacco

Cigar burn issues

jolly

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#1
It's been awhile since I had rolled cigars, but over the last few weeks I've given it another go. I reviewed the material here as well as the videos. What I'm ending up with is a couple problems. Cigars have a loose feel
Cigar burns well inside, but outside won't burn but just chars black.

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Ive rolled about 4 cigars so far, with different leaf mixes and diameters, and gotten about the same result. The last one I rolled was pretty tight, still not store bought, but pretty tight, and same burn.

Any ideas?
 

ArizonaDave

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#2
It's still too moist. A dry cedar box, a bed of scrap leaves, have been shown to draw moisture off of a freshly rolled cigar. It's probably indoor humidity or it's possible the leaf is getting too wet.
 

jolly

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#3
Could be. The filler was pretty dry -- crunchy but not disintegrating... The wrapper was pretty moist. I let the cigars rest about an hour, except for the last one that rested 24 hrs. I may stick them in my humidor jar with a small sack of rice. Maybe that would dry them down. Rice is put in salt shakers down here to keep salt from clumping.
 

Smokin Harley

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#4
how long after rolling are you allowing them to sit and dry out evenly? I'm guessing that since yours look like mine do , you case your binder and wrapper a little more than the pro rollers do . Maybe give them a good two weeks to balance in a dry box before you smoke em. Just a guess.
 

deluxestogie

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#6
If the filler is as dry as you describe, then they should be smokable immediately. Try minimizing the case of the binder (~medium case), and rolling them firmer. With low case filler, it's nearly impossible to roll one that's too tight.

A thin, well burning binder, along with solid filler, should be able to burn the wrapper regardless of wrapper case.

Is the filler home-grown or commercial?

Bob
 

Gdaddy

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#7
I see you're in S. Florida. I just leave my cigars out on a table in an air conditioned room of 54% rh for 5 days at least before any get smoked. Then they go in the humidor @63% rh. The longer the better.

Patients will reward you with a better burn and a much improved flavor.

As Bob suggests using the thinnest leaf for the binder to improve burn.
 

MarcL

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#8
If you want to smoke um sooner, let them dry out a bit before you wrap um. wood molds wick well, plastic not so much but a strip of news paper work. besides combustibility distribution, I do wonder if your toasting
 

jolly

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#9
Thanks for feedback guys.

The binder was probably a bit too moist. I did that because I as having a problem with it tearing while rolling -- trying to get the filler tight. That's probably a technique issue.

All the leaf is homegrown. It's really just what I have left -- which might be part of the problem. I was able to get a few good burning cigars after I grew initially. Then I put the leaf away and didn't mess too much with it. What's left after pipe tobacco shredding and previous rolling attempts is:
FL sumatra -- mostly lower portions of plants with some mids -- pretty scraggly -- maybe 15 left
Burley -- tips and upper leaves -- maybe 15 left
Mt. Pima -- all positions, maybe 25 left
Bafra -- quite a bit, though the leaves are tiny it's nice to have a few in the mix.

I've been rolling with various combinations of these. I thought the FL sumatra was too weak and scraggly to hold the cigar together, but I could give it a shot. Most of the wrapper and binder has been Mt. Pima (tears a bit easily, even when pretty wet) and the Burley.

I'll try to roll with more downward force and not "pull" the binder too much since it'll be drier. Bob's method of rolling and immediately smoking has the most appeal to me. I may be able to give it another go tonight. Thanks for all the help.
 

DGBAMA

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#10
Probably not good "cigar ethics" but if you want to try one early, that seems it may be a bit damp, this has worked well for me: roll it up in a paper towel and microwave 15-20 seconds. Gets surprisingly warm. Set it out to cool (still in the paper towel) about 20 mins it is stable room temp. Remove towel and enjoy. YMMV.
 

Gdaddy

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#11
Probably not good "cigar ethics" but if you want to try one early, that seems it may be a bit damp, this has worked well for me: roll it up in a paper towel and microwave 15-20 seconds. Gets surprisingly warm. Set it out to cool (still in the paper towel) about 20 mins it is stable room temp. Remove towel and enjoy. YMMV.
I've done the basically the same thing. 10 seconds on one cigar and then take it and blow out through the cigar and watch the steam come out the end. 2 or 3 times, let it cool and it's ready to go. I found if you don't blow out the steam the cigar reabsorbs most of the moisture. What have you got to lose?
 

MarcL

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#12
Do not draw on a cigar out of the microwave. you will be sorry. if you do this, purge or, blow out while doing it in succession a couple times cooling some in between.
 

DGBAMA

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#13
If the filler is low case to begin, I find the paper towel draws the moisture out of the binder/wrapper, no purge necessary, just give time for it to come completely back to room temperature.
 

Cigar

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#14
Ive been using the paper towel method from the start and have found it very great way of letting them dry-out and sitting for several days/weeks before smoking.


cigar
 

jolly

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#15
Alright, I rolled up another cigar tonight. This ones's a bit smaller. Out of the gate I found that some of my filler was in slightly higher case than I would like. Went ahead and rolled one up. Did a double binder of sumatra -- a few of the sturdier ones -- and a Mt. Pima wrapper. Absolute worst wrap I've ever done. The leaf was a bit wrinkled and rather than bring it into higher case to iron it out I just went with it. The wrapper has a stripped look because the edge of the leaf rolled over exposing the underside.

Anyway, when I finished I found that it was a bit soft, so I did the above microwave trick you guys mentioned. Was indeed able to blow a lot of steam out of it. When it cooled it was stiff as a board. Not only was it not loose, but the draw was a little bit restricted. I think I overcompensated for the previous looseness.

I fired it up and it burned evenly, but still didn't get the wrapper to burn well. It's gotta be something i'm doing with the binder. The filler burns beautifully. Initially I thought it might be due to some inconsistent curing on my part, but when these same leaves are in the filler they burn to a nice white ash. Thanks for all the advice, I'll keep working on it.

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DGBAMA

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#16
That looks like a "shell" around the filler. Like the binder and wrapper are overlapped too much, making for a bunch of extra layers.

Stupid question, but you are not by chance applying glue to the entire wrapper to make it stick? I have seen stranger things done.
 

deluxestogie

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#18
Save your prayers for the Mt. Pima. I believe that I can say with certainty that you are the only man on Earth to use Mt. Pima for cigar wrapper. My take on Mt. Pima is that it is a primitive. It resembles Little Dutch in plant habit as well as leaf form and size, but never seems to settle down to the deep, smooth and woody quality of Little Dutch, and lacks its unique and pleasing aroma. Mt. Pima definitely requires a much longer time to be ready for smoking. I haven't paid much attention to its burn qualities.

I still have some hanging from 2012. I can't seem to find a suitable use.

Try the double Sumatra binder without the Mt. Pima. And it will help to start with the filler in low case.

Bob
 

jolly

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#19
Thanks Bob,
My Mt. Pima is also from 2012 and i'm struggling to find a good use for it, too. When I add a little to blends I get a bit of a floral aroma -- adding more turns things a bit bitter. The wrapper had a bit of a bitterness on the tongue as well. Right now I'm just rolling with what I have untill my next crop comes in. If I can get the technique down before I'm wasting the good stuff I'll be happy.

I'll try with just the FL sumatra and see how it goes.
 

deluxestogie

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#20
If I can get the technique down before I'm wasting the good stuff...
My own experience was that I was unable to make any progress in my cigar-rolling technique until I used some decent wrapper and decent binder (from FmGrowit and BigBonner). It was a quantum leap that allowed me to acquire the skill needed to eventually roll well with lower quality leaf. For the price of one night out for dinner, you can rock your cigar world.

Bob
 
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