Archive for the ‘double’ Category

Lighter Review-Xikar Axia

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

Lighter: Xikar Axia double flame lighter

MSRP: $69.99

1XikarBlackBefore I dig into the review, I will get my initial experience out of the way. On December 26th I picked up a Xikar Axia from my pal Ed. After a few days I noticed the ignition lever was sticking in the down position (see picture). Shortly after that, the spark starting arching against the body of the lighter. I figured it was a good time to test the Xikar lifetime warranty.

I took the lighter back to the shop, told him the problems, and he agreed. Ed handed me a new Axia on January 6th. Sure, I was a little bummed about my new lighter being a dud, but Xikar’s warranty is hard to argue with. Also, if you register your Axia (or other Xikar lighter), they will send you a free sheath to help protect it from keys, pocket change, and the elements.

This is now my primary lighter. This article is based on one month of constant use.


The Axia has a solid sturdy feel to it and fits easily into the pocket. The ignition lever has a solid click when pulled. The adjustment knob on the bottom is big enough and easily accessible to do quick adjustments on the fly. The dual jets point straight up, not coming to a pointed flame. Despite this, I have yet to mistakenly scorch a cigar wrapper on various ring gauges. After about 10 to 15 seconds of lighting, the top of portion gets a bit warm. According to the manual, it is recommended that you maintain the flame for 10 seconds. This hasn’t been a problem for me. Getting to know the lighters characteristics is easy, and my light times are basically cut in half when compared to my single jet Blazer PB207 that recently died (RIP).


The fuel level can be checked via a window on the side of the lighter. As I expected, the dual jets can suck up a decent amount of fuel. It does light quite a few cigars on one tank though. In one night, I lit 3 cigars, and let my lighter be used by several people. It wasn’t until the next morning that it finally ran empty. As the fuel level runs low, it is easy to do quick adjustments via the large knob.

The fuel adjustment knob is limited in rotation by a notched washer under the adjustment screw. I found that as the lighter ran low on fuel, I had to adjust it almost to the maximum. Although this worked fine, I felt the need to take the limiting washer out to allow more freedom in fuel adjustments. I’m sure this is frowned upon, but I’ll try to put together another article on how I went about doing this modification. It literally took about 5 minutes.


One problem I had from time to time was when I would engage the ignition, it would take a few clicks. I noticed that the spark was arching to the lighter body. The ignition tab is located between the two jets, and extends about half way out into the flame. I was able to bend the tab downward closer to the jets. So far this cured the problem. I found that every now and then, if I blow out the jets with air, or with a rapid breath, it helps for quick ignition.


Overall, I am very happy with this lighter. A big plus for me is quick light times and touch up’s. The fuel reservoir is big enough to get you through an all night herf before needing a refill. If you have a problem, Xikar is willing to remedy it without debate thanks to their warranty. Of course, this is assuming that you used the lighter as it was intended (IE smashing it with a hammer probably isn’t covered). Overall, I recommend this Axia for those in the market for a new lighter.

LaFlor Dominicana Double Ligero(Maduro)

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

Otherwise known as the “Chisel.” When I saw this cigar I had to pick up a couple and give it a go. On LaFlor’s site, they warn you “Eat before you smoke-em.” I’ve been known to smoke the fullest bodied cigars on an empty stomach. Since this is pre-dinner, I can’t wait any longer. Let’s get to the review and see if I get sick. As always, I’m paired up with filtered water.

Wrapper: Ecuadorian sun grown

Binder: Dominican

Filler: Dominican

Size: 54 x 6



Pre-smoke & Construction:

The wrapper looked dark, oily, and rugged. In other words, it looked potent. Squeezing the cigar revealed a couple small soft spots. Otherwise, the cigar was evenly packed. The wrapped smelled of a sweet spice, while the foot smelled like more of a peppery spice. I clipped a small amount off of the chisel end, and the draw was good, offering slight resistance. The pre-light draw had a spicy peppery taste. I only had to correct the burn a few times, and the ash was strong, holding for around an inch before I tapped it into the ashtray.


The first third didn’t play around. It started off in the full bodied range with a smooth pepper. As I progressed, my mouth felt coated by the smoke. It wasn’t a bad sensation, but my palate couldn’t pick up a lot of complexities. Despite this, I really enjoyed this third.


The second third continued with full pepper flavors. An interesting mocha flavor came about just as I hit this third. It wasn’t what I would call standard though. It was very dry, almost like powdered chocolate I poured into milk as a child, minus the milk. That dry chocolate would transform into a candy bar sweetness, then go back to the dry sensation again.


The last third went waaay into the upper full bodied range. That dry chocolate flavor remained, and still transformed into a candy bar at times. The pepper remained strong, but it mellowed out a bit. A touch of earthness crept in and I really had to pay attention to catch it.



Despite smoking on an empty stomach, I did not get sick at all. I can’t deny a full nicotine buzz, but no nausea. I am the man. Say it. About the cigar… If FULL bodied cigars are your thing, I would have to recommend this powerhouse. There was no harshness, just a somewhat simple, powerful flavor profile. To the normal smoker out there, have this after a good meal.

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