Xikar cutters (one for home and one in my travel case), and a backup is my Colibri mutlifunction lighter which has a punch mechanism on the bottom of it. I like the action of cutting and hearing the crisp *snip*....
I have began doing a combonation of the two and it seems to work very well. I use a normal guillotine cutter but instead of quickly chopping it, I just put a small amout of pressure on the cigar with the blade and rotate the cigar holding that pressure.
The end result is just the cap being cut and after that you can just remove it, exposing the cigar. It has a much bigger opening than the punch, but it doesn't distroy cigars like the cutter does (especially if you are using a free cutter I got with a online cigar order!)
I use a cutter on all but the most fragile cigars. Those I'll use a very sharp punch on. I find that, generally speaking, the cutter opens the cap more fully, permitting air flow through the full circumference of the cigar and preventing dead spots and the inceased accumulation of tar at the head that I sometimes get with the punch.
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