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Cigars look like crap
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Author:  longashes [ Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:07 am ]
Post subject:  Cigars look like crap

Gentlemen,

I have around 1500 leaves from three different blends and have color coded (by zip tie) each layer of the plant from seco, viso, and ligero. Right now they are still hanging, but I have some mud leaves that have been in the kiln (after browning of course) for about two weeks now. I decided to take a few out and roll up a couple of cigars to get some practice (and I was bored).

The cigars looked like crap. I know the mud leaves had some tiny holes and some wrinkles in them and that this was just for practice, but these look like poop. Has anyone else dealt with leaves that had wrinkles in them or little holes, and how did you "stretch" them, or make the leaf look "nicer"? Below is an image of the poop sticks (ie. my first attempt at rolling a cigar 4.5x56 torpedo).

Image

Author:  Jitterbugdude [ Tue Sep 04, 2012 10:56 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

Just a guess, because it's a little hard diagnosing a picture sometimes but:

It looks like you need to use better leaf for your wrappers, I know they were mud lugs but better looking leaves will go along way to a better looking cigar.. This is often the hardest part of making a "nice" looking cigar. No one sees the filler or binder but that wrapper really stands out.

It also looks like you are twisting your wrapper as you roll. Don't do that! Make sure your wrapper is nice and moist, lay it out flat onto a table and smooth it out, then put your bunch onto it. As you roll with one hand, keep the other on the wrapper and try to slightly stretch it with your fingers. If you have to, spray your wrapper leaves lightly with water, put into a plastic bag for a few hours or overnight, when they become universally moist they will stretch real nice for you. Also, consider that certain tobaccos are known for their elasticity qualities, Conn shade leaf and Glessnor are two.

Author:  longashes [ Tue Sep 04, 2012 12:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

What do you mean by twisting the wrapper?

Author:  Wedal2 [ Tue Sep 04, 2012 4:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

Have you tried cutting along the edges of the wrapper so they are straight. It made a difference for me. Watch a YouTube vid of a professional cigar maker.

Author:  cigarnews [ Tue Sep 04, 2012 8:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

Save yourself some time and save your leaves. Find a person to roll them professionaly for you in your town.

Author:  Jitterbugdude [ Wed Sep 05, 2012 3:59 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

longashes wrote:
What do you mean by twisting the wrapper?


You want your hand that is doing the rolling to open palmed. Don't grab the bunch and try to roll it because you will end up twisting the wrapper and leaf

cigarnews wrote:
Save yourself some time and save your leaves. Find a person to roll them professionaly for you in your town.


I have to disagree with this 100%. Practice making your own cigars. It does not take much talent to roll a "perfect" cigar. It just takes a lot of practice.

Author:  deluxestogie [ Wed Sep 05, 2012 8:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

Mud lugs are also known as "trash." An occasional mud-lug will make a nice wrapper, but most will not.

Suggestions:
  • pay no attention to how a cigar looks, until you've rolled several dozen
  • aim for adequate draw
  • ignore suggestions that someone else should do the rolling
  • mud lugs are just freebies anyway

JBD's suggestions on rolling are important. The wrapper is held stationary on the board, while the filler bulk is being rolled.

Bob

EDIT: Whatever leaf you use as a wrapper, it may need to be lightly misted with water to bring it into case. Tough leaf, like CT Broadleaf, usually needs to be humidified between moist paper towels overnight. Once in proper case, it will be much stretchier, and less likely to crumble. Don't do this with the filler. Filler should be in just enough case to not crumble when crushed slowly.

Author:  Chris [ Wed Sep 05, 2012 2:03 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

They look a lot better than my first cigar.

Image Image

Just kidding, these are some mud lugs that when they got high in case, I flattened out and rolled up, kind of a stress test just to see what a tobacco leaf can take, and get familiar with it's characteristics, after all, there mud lugs no big loss.
That way when it's time to use my prim leaf, I'll kind of know what to expect
.
cigarnews wrote:
Save yourself some time and save your leaves. Find a person to roll them professionaly for you in your town.


And after all the effort you put into your tobacco crop, with me anyway, making your own tobacco cut, or rolling your own cigars, are the REWARDS of all that effort, and not to be given to someone else to do for you.
Keep on rollen!

Chris

Author:  longashes [ Thu Sep 06, 2012 7:26 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

Thanks for the advice guys! I actually tried smoking one of them and it wouldn't even light, and when it did it had no taste. LOL I decided to break one apart and make three cigarillos while blending them differently. I went with dark, medium, and light as the filler, light as the binder, and dark as the wrapper (the blends got lost in translation along the way).

First impressions? Even on these mud leaves I was burning my fingers until the end. It had a very smoky (not straight smoke but like a steak that's smoked), sweet, and peppery (straight black pepper) taste. It also had feint pipe tobacco tastes to it, like a cavendish. It was smooth, and the draw on the cigar I rolled was perfect. The kicker here is that it also had a decent bit of nicotine to it. Which means these cigars may pack a big punch on flavor and strength once finished because these are just the mud leaves from the bottom of the plant (flavor and strength travels up).

We still have about two months before true rolling begins but I am super excited! Here is a picture of me smoking the little cigarillo I rolled up. (Backwoods style)

Image

Author:  deluxestogie [ Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:17 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

  1. congratulations on the successful little cigars
  2. shame on you for taking that photo, instead of paying attention to driving

Bob

Author:  rustycase [ Fri Sep 07, 2012 5:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

Well they sure do look like turds!

Might be worse to smoke them while driving than cell-phone use!
All kinds of embers could be dropping off them!

lol

As JBD and DS said.... practice, practice, practice!

Good luck with that,
rc

Author:  wastoute [ Sun Sep 09, 2012 4:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cigars look like crap

Watch someone (and watch the road!) I have seen several folks roll while visiting the French Quarter in New Orleans. watch how they do it.

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