Cigars 101

How to Clean a Cigar Cutter

Reading Time: 2 minutes

As you continue to clip your cigars with the same cigar cutter, after a while you may notice one or all of the following:

  • The caps are beginning to shred instead of slicing-off cleanly
  • The cutter doesn’t open and close as smoothly as it used to
  • The cutter is starting to build up some brownish gunk on the blades.

If you think that tossing it in the trash can is the solution, whoa, not so fast! All your cutter may need a good cleaning. Even if you use a cheapo, freebie cigar cutter, a decent cleaning will help improve its performance. It’s easy to do, works on every type of cutter, including scissors, and takes about five minutes. All you need are cotton swabs, rubbing alcohol, and some graphite lubricant.

  1. Daub a swab with rubbing alcohol and carefully rub all of the metal surfaces on the cutter. Any tars on the blades will come right up. If the swab gets too dirty, use a fresh swab and continue.
  2. Use a dry swab to absorb any leftover alcohol and complete the cleaning.
  3. Do the above as many times as it takes to get all the gunk off the blade/s.
  4. Place a very small amount of graphite lubricant on both sides of the blade/s and begin opening and closing the cutter. You will notice a marked improvement in movement.
  5. Wipe off any excess lube with a clean cotton swab.

For cigar smokers who use Xikar “X-type” cutters: Because the blades are so sharp on these cutters it takes a long time for them to dull, so cleaning is usually the most you have to do. With the bottom of the cutter (the narrow end) facing up, apply a very small amount of graphite oil where the blades are held together by the hex screw. You can also apply a little bit of lube under the open/close button. You’ll notice that the cutter now opens much more quickly. This method can also be used for similarly designed cigar cutters.

Finally, in case you were a little sloppy, make sure you have completely removed all traces of lubricant on any of the exposed areas of the cutter. That’s pretty much it. You may have just saved yourself from having to purchase a new cutter. Instead, use that money to pick up a few good cigars.

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Gary Korb

Gary Korb

Executive Editor

Gary Korb has been writing and editing content for since its debut in 2008. An avid cigar smoker for over 30 years, he has worked on the marketing side of the premium cigar business as a Sr. Copywriter, blogger, and Executive Editor of Cigar Advisor. A graduate of the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, prior to his career in the cigar business, Gary worked in the music and video industry as a marketer and a publicist.

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