Why did I do this?
I was introduced to my first cigar in 1994, and I never looked back. I didn't realize there was a difference between the typical mass-market cigars you can buy at the local drugstore, versus a premium-quality hand-made cigar that takes years to cultivate, make, and age. It was then that I delved into the history, culture, and legends that make the premium tobbacco plantations what they are today. I was facinated by what little I had learned, and found myself digging deeper and deeper into the traditions and history behind the industry. While I partake of the occasional cigar myself, my real interest lies in collecting those cigars in which the history and legends interest me the most.
In the Beginning: From May 2002 to April 2003, I sketched, planned and built (with the extensive help of my neighbors Jim and Steve) a walk-in humidor to protect my investment in my massive cigar collection. Currently I have around 10,000 cigars (roughly 390 boxes + bundles, samplers and singles). These cigars require a constant environment of 70% humidity and 70 degrees temperature, otherwise they're toast. My cigar collection used to be housed in tupperware bins, and while it worked great, I outgrew them.
My Mission: I not only wanted to build a climate-controlled room for storing and preserving my cigar collection, but I also wanted to create something of a showroom. A room that not only highlighted the collection, but a room that would also blend in with the rest of the basement once it was finished. Finally, I wanted to build most of this myself and try my hand at construction.
A Picture of my actual humidor the day it was completed
Some Highlights: Actual Construction time was 8 months on my spare time. All of the back and side panels are constructed from Spanish Cedar. The shelves are Spanish Cedar as well. The cabinets are solid Mahagony and the trim is sealed Red Oak. The floor is Mirabeau and the wall is sponge painted with a matte seal. The climate is controlled by a Climatech Habitat humistat/thermostat with two custom low-voltage relays that control a Bemis 1800 sqft humidifier and an in-wall forced-air heater. There are three electrical circuits dedicated to the room (lights, 240v heater, and wine Refridge/Humidifier appliances). Total construction cost of room was $6,421. With furnishings the cost to date is $8,398. I'm continually adding artwork.
Check out the video on the right to get a good look at the room and its features. To get a real in-depth look at the construction and considerations that went into this project, read the journal.
Many thanks to Jim K. and Steve Y. for their help, labor, and expertise. My design was well beyond my means, and without their help this project would not have been possible.