Written by Puff Staff

Friday, 18 October 2013

User Rating: / 4


The Construction

Once your cooler is clean and dry, it’s ready to be lined with Spanish cedar. Hopefully, you have some old cigar boxes hanging around the house that are lined with Spanish cedar. If not you may have to buy or beg a few pieces from your local B&M. Another good source is a lumberyard. Don’t try to skimp by using white cedar—you really need to use Spanish cedar if you expect to keep your cigars in prime condition and have them smell totally delicious.


Once your have your cedar strips, lay them around the interior of the cooler. Do not try to nail or glue them to the sides. Next place a hygrometer on the lid of the cooler. Velcro is a good choice for sticking it to the lid since you can’t use glue. The digital type is easiest to read.

Depending on the size of the cooler, you’ll need two to four humidifiers, spaced evenly around the interior. Since you’re doing this on the cheap, you can use silica beads in plastic bags for humidifying. Another budget-friendly idea for humidifying is to buy a cheap florist’s oasis from a crafts store, making sure you get the “wet” kind. Cut it to a size that will fit into a plastic bowl. Dampen it with a 50/50 mix of distilled water and propylene glycol. Put it in a plastic Tupperware-type bowl or other container, then place it in the cooler. Check on the oasis to make sure it’s damp and add more distilled water as necessary. You can tell it’s drying out when you see the humidity level dropping over several days.

Now place your cooler-dor in the spot where you plan to keep it and keep testing the humidity until it reaches 60-70% RH. When it does, you can start adding your cigars. All cigars should be stored in boxes or in a pinch, Ziploc baggies. Be sure to keep a close eye on the RH for the first few days. For optimal performance, your cooler-dor should be at least half-full at all times.

Hopefully, you’ve been saving old cigar boxes and have enough to store your entire collection. Quality wooden boxes are the best because they help to hold in the humidity, especially at times when the lid is open, but sturdy cardboard boxes can be used, too.

If your cooler-dor is larger than 70 quarts, you might want to add a small fan that will keep the air circulating and prevent the formation of pockets of humidity. One possibility is the battery-powered Oust fan that sells for about $7. One great thing about this fan is that it runs for five minutes before shutting off for 15, helping to conserve battery power.

Your cooler-dor may not be as elegant as a fancy humidor, but it will keep your cigar collection fresh without dropping a lot of dough!

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