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Cigars/Last Third Longer Cigars


Dear Gorman,

I have been enjoying cigars for roughly three years now, starting out mostly on Robustos. Recently I have ventured into longer cigars, and last year purchased a sampler of maduro US market cigars, consisting of mostly Toro vitolas. My humidor set up is a 65% Boveda pack in a tupperware container lined with cedar sheets acquired from cigar tubes. I do not have a hygrometer in there. I usually burp the tupperdor once a week as it is airtight.

My issue relates to smoking the last third of this batch of maduro Toros. In the past, when I have bought cigars from a shop or online, I have smoked Robustos and Churchills alike to at least the band while maintaining cool flavoursome smoke. However, while they start off and stay great up to about halfway, the maduro Toros in my tupperdor get harsh and harder to keep lit in the last third. They have been sitting for a year now. I chose 65% to avoid any potential burn issues associated with higher moisture. I have sometimes dry boxed a Toro for 6-24 hours before smoking to see if that would help, to not much noticeable difference.

Since I have smoked many longer cigars from shops and online to the nub, I am hesitant to think this issue with my Toros relates to my smoking technique. I have also noticed when I try to purge the Toros with a flame and blowing through the cigar, I cannot get a flame to catch on the end. Does this mean there are not enough tars/byproducts to expel from the cigar, or am I just doing this wrong? Are burn issues near the end common in longer cigars since more smoke has filtered through it due to the greater length? Should I pay more attention to my smoking technique, or perhaps do I need to look into my storage set up more?

Any advice relating to any possible factors would be appreciated.

Kind regards,


Hello Charles,

There are a few factors to consider:

1. If the problem is constant to the one kind of cigar by the same maker, it could mean there is a blending flaw by the maker. Certain parts of the tobacco or different primings of tobacco  placed into the cigar when blended may collect too much humidity which could cause this blend to get roadblocked. Too much Ligero or Viso (the upper and mid priming) that could be bunched too tight could slow the burn down. The Secco (the lowest priming)priming tends to burn faster because they are thinner, while the higher priming of tobaccos tend to burn slower due to the constitution and thicker physical composition they have.

2. If you are using a punch cut on this cigar, you are restricting a smaller air flow passage during your draw. The straight guillotine cut would give your cigar more channel flow which more oxygen could fuel the ambers to burn more evenly and consistently.  Bullet cutting also tends to create a trapping of moisture towards the end of the cigar as well.  

3. If you tend to smoke any cigar too fast, the last third of the cigar could get too soft. The cigar would tend to burn hotter and less smoke would be created during the efforts to produce a full draw of smoke. This could ruin almost every cigar you will ever have. The cigar should always be sipped rather than gulped.

In closing, I'd like to thank you for your very well written question. I would lean to answer #1 on this if they are all the same manufacturer. I usually answer these questions more promptly, however I have been extremely busy as of late, so please except my apology for the delay.

Cool ashes to you Charles and feel free to follow up with more information and questions.

Gorman Ludwig  


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Gorman Ludwig


I can answer questions about most premium cigars available in the US market. I can provide information to retailers and general consumers about procedures, order of operations, problem solving, cigar etiquette, proper contacts,humidor preperation, butane lighter repair, and cigar history.


I have been smoking cigars since 1991. I began my cigar career in 1998 in a retail store and cigar bar which I worked for eight years (1998-2005). I began my position as a Regional Sales Manager for a major cigar company in 2006 which I still enjoy.

I.P.C.P.R., Cigar Association of South Carolina, North Carolina POremium Cigar Association

Graduate of St. Petersburg College and University of South Florida.

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