Xikar EXII Havana Collection Lighter
by Adam Estrem
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Below: from left to right: right side of lighter, top when opened, and left side
The accessory I will be reviewing is a lighter that comes from the Xikar Company. Kurt Van Keppel and Scott Almsberger founded Xikar in 1994. Their original goal was to make a cigar-cutting tool that far exceeded the run-of-the-mill, cheap plastic cutters in performance and design.
The first products manufactured by Xikar were actually made in their garages. Over the years they have expanded their product lines to include knives, lighters, humidification accessories and, most recently, cigars. Their Havana Collection cigars (abbreviated HC), have received many favorable reviews and they are very tasty smokes.
Along with the release of the Havana Collection line of cigars, Xikar produced a line of Havana Collection accessories. This line includes cutters, lighters and ashtrays. The lighter I am reviewing comes from the Havana Collection, and is called the Xikar EXII Havana Collection Wind Proof Lighter.
When I purchased this lighter, the first thing that surprised me was the weight of it (2.8 ounces with fuel). It is a hefty lighter that feels extremely rigid and well made. The lighter is all silver polished steel, except for a little rectangle of cigar art centered on each side. The artwork is influenced by the lithography of Cuban cigars and box labels of years gone by.
After filling up this work of art with butane, I fired her up to try it out. What really intrigued me was that, as the name suggests, the EXII Havana Collection lighter is wind proof. So, I expected it to be a torch lighter of some sort. This is, indeed, a torch lighter, but the flame is not a jet flame. Instead it is what is called a soft flame, much like you would find on a standard BIC lighter. You can rest assured that it definitely sounds like a torch. And, you can’t blow it out, even though the flame remains soft. This brings up a question: What is the difference between wind proof and wind resistant? Wind proof to me, means that no matter how hard the wind blows, the heat generated by the lighter is hot enough to light a cigar. Wind resistant may offer some protection, but if the wind blows at just the right direction, the flame will go out. After lighting 30 cigars or so with this lighter, I can say with some authority that this may be the sturdiest wind proof lighter I have ever owned.
Everything about this lighter feels well made. The springs that open the top, the flame adjustment wheel, and the ignition lever, all feel as though they were made with the love and respect that every cigar smoker deserves. I would expect nothing less of Xikar, and at a price point of around $95 dollars, you are also getting a lighter with a cool factor of 10.
This lighter, though on the pricey side, is a well-made work of
art. You can use this lighter outside and enjoy a cigar in the slight
breeze or in a windstorm. Impress your friends at your local B&M
and show them this soft flame feature. But if you purchase one, know
that you are purchasing a lighter that is made to last you a life
About the Author
Adam Estrem is the founder of the Newbie Cigar Blog. You can also follow Adam on Twitter (@newbiecigarblog), or on Facebook (Newbie Cigar Blog).blog comments powered by Disqus