Seasoning and setting up a humidor is relatively simple when it comes down to it. Think about it: you make sure the interior wood is humidified to the desired relative humidity, and then stick a humidifier and hygrometer to the inside of the lid. If your humidor has a good seal, your humidor will maintain its humidity for a long while before you have to do any routine maintenance. However, if you are dealing with a glass top humidor, you may have to do a little more work than this to ensure your cigars are kept humidified.
There are two main issues with humidor set up when using a glass top humidor we never really think about. Usually (myself included), we see a glass top humidor and want it so we can stare into it and daydream about what cigars we’re going to have next. It’s like looking at the Mona Lisa behind glass. It makes our cigars look like a masterpiece. Okay, so I digress. This is turning more into a romantic novel than an actual “How To,” article. Anyway, the two main issues are where to put your hygrometer and humidifier, and how to deal with a loose seal around the glass which will drain humidity from your humidor.
First of all, regarding where to put your hygrometer and humidifier (which is a question we constantly get when someone is setting up a glass top humidor), you can put your hygrometer and humidifier anywhere you want. It’s preferable to place at least the humidifier on top of your cigars however, to have the moisture drop down on to your cigars, but to be perfectly honest, a humidifier will work just as well when resting on the bottom of your humidor. Humidifiers act more as an aid to the humidified wood in your humidor and just extend the period in between re-seasoning it. Similarly, the hygrometer can go anywhere in your humidor since the humidity will be constant throughout.
Now on to the biggest issue when setting up a glass top humidor: the seal.You may not realize it, but the seal between the wood and glass may not be air tight, which is the case 99% of the time if you find you are losing humidity. A lot of the time, people will attribute this to a loose seal around the lid instead, when the seal is actually air tight. To test the seal around the glass, just place clear tape around the outside lid and let it sit. If the humidity holds, the seal is weak and needs to be fixed. To fix this, just get a clear, odorless epoxy and apply it to the edge of the glass to create an air tight seal. It’s a rather easy fix to a simple problem.
So if you are thinking of buying a glass top humidor, keep these tips in mind. It may sound rather discouraging that the seal around the glass may not be tight, but I can assure you, setting up a glass top humidor is worth it and looks great.