How to Use a Punch Cutter

June 8, 2022

Punch Cutters are excellent tools for cigar enthusiasts. They can deliver a quick and simple cut to almost any cigar on the market and are great for enthusiasts who often enjoy a cigar while traveling. Let’s look at punch cutters, how to use them, and how they differ from other cigar cutters on the market.

What makes a punch cutter unique?

With all the different tools to prepare your fine handmade cigar for smoking, there is one style of cut that is quite different from the rest. Most cigar cutters, like guillotines, V-cutters, or even cigar scissors, make their cuts across a cigar’s cap, like a chef slicing vegetables into medallions.

Punch cutters are a bit different. Like a cookie cutter taking a perfectly shaped chunk from a sheet of unbaked cookie dough, a punch cutter pierces a cigar’s cap downward towards the foot to remove a circular chunk from the cap.

Punch cigar cutters are exactly like cookie cutters, except designed specifically for cigars. The circular blade of a punch cutter will dig into the cap of your stogie and remove a perfect hole to draw the smoke through.

How to cut with a punch cutter

Using a punch cutter is very simple. Line up your cut on the center of the cigar’s cap. With a firm but delicate force, start twisting the punchcutter back and forth so the blade can work its way into the tobacco cap.

It is important not to too forceful with your cut. Otherwise, you might split the wrapper and render your premium stogie impossible to smoke! Let the blade do the work of cutting and slicing.

After slicing through the cap, slide the punch out from the cigar cap and knock the removed chunk out of the cutter. And voila! You have now successfully delivered a punch cut to your cigar.

Aficionados use cigar punches for a variety of reasons. Some cigars, like the popular CAO Flathead, have a unique cap that makes using a guillotine or a V-cutter difficult. Big-ring cigars with ring gauges in the 60s and especially 70+ ring-gauge cigars simply do not fit in most guillotine or V-cutters.

Cigar punches also maintain the top-notch craftsmanship that goes into forming a cigar’s cap. Lining up a straight cut with a guillotine cutter takes practice, and sometimes too much of the cap may be removed. Punch cutters only take a small piece of the cap, so even if you make a mistake, it will likely be easy to correct.

Although versatile and can be used for most cigars, cigar punches are not a good option for every single cigar on the market. Any cigar with a tapered cap, like torpedo vitolas, or other figurado cigars, are much better suited for a straight or V-cut due to their unique, pointed shape.

Types of punch cutters

Punch cutters come in a variety of different sizes as well. Different diameter cutters are good for different-sized cigars; you would want a larger cut on a big-ring cigar and a small-sized cut for thinner cigars like a Lonsdale or Lancero. Punch cutters can range anywhere from 7mm in diameter to around 12mm.

There is also a plethora of different styles of punch cutters to fit your style. Many come with a keyring so you can take it along with you.

Some, such as this Xikar Twist, have a retractable blade that has two different cutting depths. Many cigar lighters also come with built-in cigar punches that fold out from the base, providing a multi-tool that aficionados count on.

Now that you learned everything you need to know about using a punch cutter, get out there and start enjoying your favorite handmade cigars with a new top-quality cut! Be sure to keep up to date on all things related to cigars by regularly checking in here at the JR Blending Room!

Other Quick Tips for Beginners

  • Never knew what an actual cigar is? Click here to find out more!
  • New to cigar smoking? Check out our new sampler for Beginner Cigar Smokers. This sampler has seven cigars, a cutter, and a lighter.
  • If your cigar happens to crack, here are some suggestions on how to repair a cracked cigar.
  • Interested in knowing the inner workings of a cigar? Well, check out what is Filler TobaccoBinder Tobacco, and a Wrapper today!
  • Want to know how to cut a cigar with a Guillotine cutter? Go here for more information!
  • Want to know how to cut a cigar with a V-Cut Cutter? Go here for more information!


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