Written by James Payne

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

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scissor_cutterWelcome back to the second article in our series entitled, “Making the Cut”, where we take a look at the proper ways – and the proper tools – to make the perfect cut. Properly opening your cigar is the first step in insuring a good draw, and making the wrong one can cause your cigar to literally fall to pieces. To make sure you have the best experience possible, keep reading!


In the last article we took a good, long look at several types of cutters and the cuts they make. The first was the Guillotine, which derives its name from the French execution machine, and with good reason, as it lobs off the head or the “cap” of your cigar. We talked about the two varieties of the Guillotine, the single and double blade, and the advantages/disadvantages of each. 

We also covered the V-Cut, another popular method for opening your cigar. As you may recall, the V-Cut gives a large draw, as it goes deeper into the body of cigar. Like the Guillotine, it also comes in two varieties; the handheld and the heavier tabletop version. 

Scissors: Not Just for Hair Anymore

The first type of cutter we will look at in this article is the Scissor cutter. Less popular than the V-Cut and Guillotine (but still a viable option), it creates a straight, often times, uneven cut. It looks similar to something an old time barber might use, giving it a somewhat awkward charm. You can expect to pay anywhere from $10 on up to $100 for one of these, but keep in mind: you get what you pay for.

One major advantage to the scissor cutter is its ability to accommodate any size of cigar, whether it be a petite cigarillo or a fat .66 ring gauge Casa Blanca Jeroboam. But herein also lies the chief weakness of the scissor; if you have ever tried to cut a stack of heavy card stock paper with a pair of scissors, you will know what I am talking about. With the scissor, there is no way to keep the cutter steady, so often times you will walk away with a cut that you did not expect. It is extremely difficult to cut off the same amount of the cap each time with a scissor.

And one further caveat: make sure the blade is always sharp. If not, you can come away with a ragged cap, an unraveled cigar, or a pinched off end.  All that aside however, the cutter is not a bad option, and is relatively inexpensive and easy to maintain. Below is a picture of what your typical scissor cut cigar would look like:





0 # Hot Stuff x 2009-01-20 10:19
Where's the link to the earlier articles? I missed them...:cry:

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0 # James Payne 2009-01-24 08:32
This is the second article in a series on choosing the right cutter for your cigar. In this one, I talk about the scissor cutter, the pinhole, and the puncture cut. I invite you to leave any comments or suggestions of your own, or to discuss your own experiences.

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0 # James Payne 2009-01-24 08:32
Hi Hot Stuff, you can find the first aricle in the series under Puff Lifestyle. Thanks for reading!

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0 # What about figurados?Tom Del Conte 2009-01-31 07:26
Thanks for a good article. Eventhough I've been smoking cigars for a long time I can still become somewhat intimidated with cutting the Figurado or Torpedo type cigar. Obviously you wouldn't use a bullet cutter but how far down do you make the cut using the other cutter styles? I still try to keep the cut without going below the cap but I've had various degrees of success (or lack of success, heck maybe even disastrous results) when cutting these. Also I've noticed that the opening of the tip of the cigar can greatly impact the taste and strength of the cigar. This happens also with the punch or bullet type cutter. The narrow opening can make the cigar a lot stronger than the blender had in mind when developing the cigar. What's your take on this?

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