And Now For Something Completely Different; A Revelation on Cigars and Ring Gauges

Part of the humour of Monty Python was the unexpected shift, “and now for something completely different.”

I enjoy cigars. The ritual of taking time to do nothing but to sit back, relax and enjoy a naughty habit in the company of like minded men. It’s social, it’s escape, it’s relaxing. and when I chatted about it with my therapist and she agreed.

So…ring guages.

Cigars sizes are given by two numbers, for example 6 x 40. The first number is the length in inches, the second is the ring gauge. Ring gauge is measured in 64s of an inch, so a 6 x 40 cigar is six inches long and 40/64 of an inch thick.

I have smoked everything from ring gauge 22 up through ring gauges in the 50s, but I never put a whole lot of thought into them until the last couple of years.

The smoking time of  a cigar is a combination of length, ring gauge and the type of filler, and since I only smoke long filler cigars, we’ll leave that aside.

Lately I’ve been buying cigars with a 45 to 60 minute smoking time. Generally something in the 5 to 6 inch length, with a gauge between 40 and 50. Last night I was trying out a new blend (to me) and it came in at 5 x 54.

It was a nice cigar, but there was something in the aftertaste in the final 1/3, something that reminded me of a big cigar I had a couple years ago, a Toro (6 x 60).

That’s when I had a little revelation; I’m not a big ring gauge guy.

The flavour of a cigar comes primarily from the wrapper, and these big ring gauges give the filler too much say in the final flavours.

I’ll test this, of course, but I think it’s smaller ring gauges for me.