Thursday, 6 August 2015

You're the one who likes cigars right? try smoking this.

Nowhere in the world grows tobacco better than Cuba. Only few selected farms are judges good enough to grow the tobacco for Habanos.

Smoking a cigar is a great way to unwind or celebrate a special occasion. Before you smoke a cigar, you have to know how to choose the right kind, cut the cigar, and light the cigar. Lighting a cigar is all about savoring the flavor instead of inhaling the smoke. If you want to know how to smoke a cigar like a pro in no time at all, just follow these steps.

There are many different types of cigars and a variety to choose from.

  • The Corona. This cigar measures 6 inches (15.2 cm) by 42-ring gauge - this refers to the diameter of the cigar. This cigar has an open foot (the part that is lit) and a closed and rounded head (the part that you smoke).
  • The Pyramid. This cigar has a pointed, closed head.
  • The Torpedo. This cigar has a bulge in the middle and a pointed head and closed foot.
  • The Perfecto. This is like the Torpedo, except it has a bulge in the middle and two closed ends, making it a rounder cigar.
  • The Panatela. This cigar measures 7 inches (17.8 cm) by 38-ring gauge and is longer and thinner than the Corona.
  • The Culebra. This cigar is made of three Panatellas braided together. It looks like a thick rope.
It takes 5 types of tobacco leaf to make a Habano; each type is specially grown and prepared for it's purpose.

Three types of leaf are blended to form the filler, or tripa, source of the rich flavours and aromas. 

Volado: Light- flavoured leaf, especially valued for its combustibility.

Seco: Medium- flavoured, the most important leaf for aroma. 

Ligero: Full-flavoured, slow burning for a touch of strength 

Most quality handmade cigars, regardless of shape will have a cap which is one or more small pieces of a wrapper. The cap end of a cigar must be cut off for the cigar to be smoked properly. 
If the cigar end is cut jaggedly or without care, the end of the cigar will not burn evenly and smokable tobacco will be lost. 

Cap: A small, round piece of wrapper leaf attached to the head of a cigar.
The purpose of the cap is to secure the wrapper. 

Head: The closed end of the cigar. The head of a manmade cigar must 
be clipped or cut, see video below to see how you can cut different types of cigars.

Cigar band: The label that sits around the head of the cigar.

Foot: The end of the cigar that you light. The foot of a cigar is usually pre-cut. 

The filler is the heart of the cigar and is a combination of leaves from the top, middle and bottom of the tobacco plant that are normally used for the filler. The filler gives the cigar most of its characteristic flavor and strength and makes up most of the volume of the cigar.

The Construction of the Filler
The three different types of filler are carefully folded or bunched together. If you look down the end of a premium cigar, you should be able to see the way the filler is folded.

The 3 types of Filler
The filler is typically constructed with the strong ligero leaf in the center, the lighter seco leaf around the ligero, and the volado surrounding both the ligero and seco

The binder, of capote, is the special leaf that wraps around the leaves of the filler, defining the shape of the cigar and perfecting it's smoking quality.

The wrapper, or caps, is the exquisitely thin and supple leaf that forms the outer surface of the cigar. The wrapper contributes little to the flavour of a Habano, but it stands as the ultimate symbol of the cigars perfection. 

The perfect leaf:Shade Grown Tobacco
  • The muslin cover filters the sunlight and traps the heat.
  • The leaves are thin, smooth and silky
  • The leaves grow larger larger and finer - perfect for wrapper leaf - cap

Sun Grown Tobacco

  • Full sunlight develops a variety of different flavours that are blended to form a rich and complex taste of a cigar - tripa 
  • Binder leaf- capote 
  • Flavour increases further up the plant 

Storage- Humidor 
A humidor is an airtight container for keeping cigars of tobacco moist 

Humidors of all sizes use hygrometers to keep track of the humidity levels. 

Temperature 16c - 18c 
Humidity 65%- 70%

  1. Full Burn 

    The smoker cuts the cap from the head of the cigar and ignites the foot of the cigar. The smoker draws smoke from the head of the cigar with the mouth and lips, usually not inhaling into the lungs. 

    A match or cedar spill flame (see picture below) is a milder flame to be used. 

    Hoyo de Monterrey
    Epicure No.2
    Flavour- light
    Length- 124mm

    "smooth strength, it has an intenstobacco taste,  blended with cocoa, cinnamon, and dried fruits."

    Romeo y Julieta 
    Short Churchill Tubos 
    Flavour- medium 
    Length 124mm

    "Very good construction, smooth, doesn't get too bitter, never becomes too harsh."

    Cigar Training at Gauchos

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Monday, 29 June 2015

Mean and moody- Harley Davidson's Iron 883

The marque is more than just a make of motorcycle - H-D is a lifestyle, a culture, a statement about who you are!

The Iron 883 is muscular, mean and moody and is one of Harley- Davidson's "Sportster," models. Built as a stock bike with many features that one would normally only see on a custom ride, I guess you could consider this to be another "showroom custom,' similar to the Breakout in the "Softail" family. This blacked-out bruiser is a raw, aggressive throwback. No apologies—just an authentic ride.

From the narrow XL front end, across the "fat peanut' tank engine to the traditional rear fender, the Iron 883 is the anti-chrome motorcycle, endowed with their "black out" look with black front forks with gators which add an old school look, black cast- aluminium wheels and a black powder-coated engine with black rocker covers- this bike gives off an unapologetic aggressive look. It even has black fork dust covers a la Café Racer to deepen the historical ties. The low-rise, slammed black drag-style handlebar is an old school garage feature that puts you in a forward, aggressive riding position, black finish hand controls and retro style bullet taillights add to the stripped down, minimal look. The  883cc engine is air-cooled and fuel injected. That means you don't have to mess around with carburettors ! There is a very low seat heights on this motorcycle which makes it easy to flat foot and give you more of a sense of security. You will need that because this bike is massive, it tips the scale at 562lbs. 

The blacked-out, 13 spoke wheels mount Michelin Scorcher tires that use cutting- edge synthetic polymers to provide both grip and durability- (which are usually mutually exclusive) and the tread design provides excellent water evacuation for those non-fair weather riders who aren't put off by a little inclement weather. 
Stop-Turn tail lights- retro style bullet taillights combine functionally to work twice as hard- stop beams and running lights plus turn indicators in two low profile rear lamps. This eliminates the need for extra lights. The Iron 883 is one of the best looking Harley's, combining classic with modern if you want a fierce looking motorcycle, look no further.


  • Fuel Injected
  • Low seat height
  • Aggressive styling


  • Heavy at 562 lbs! 
  • More expensive than smaller displacement motorcycles

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Tyre Pressure

The only thing between the hard unforgiving pavement and you is your tires. Best that you know, understand, respect and learn how to treat them well.

Under inflation may also: 
-Damage the tire leading to tire failure
-Adversely affect vehicle cornering
-Reduce tire life -Increase fuel consumption
-Fatigue cracking 

Over inflation may also:

-Cut, puncture, or broken by sudden impact
-serious personal injury or death could result.

Do not exceed the pressure indicated on the tire sidewall. Consult your owners manual for the recommended inflation and other tire information. 

Always check your tire pressure before you ride, and always know your load limit. Check the tire sidewalls for signs of cracking-indicators that it could be time for replacements. Never apply tire sidewall treatments or dressings, which can actually accelerate tire cracking.

It's especially important to be aware that worn tires decrease the ability to dissipate water. Be sure to check several points around the tire, including the centre tread as this portion of the tire is especially vital for water evacuation. 

Heat is the enemy of tires, so in the heat of the summer it is especially important to check tire pressures frequently to ensure proper inflation. under inflated tires generate additional heat by flexing more than they should, while a properly inflated tire runs cooler. 

Pre- ride checklist

Fluids. Make sure all your oil and fluids are topped off with the correct fluids. 

Harley Davidson motorcycle battery
Battery. Make sure both the connections are tight. If your motorcycle battery is not a sealed type, make sure the cells are full of fluid. Be sure to check for cracks and leaks and that the vent hose is not plugged.

Drive belt or chain. If you have a chain, make sure it's properly lubed and has the correct tension.

drive chain

Cables. Make sure all cables are 
adjusted correctly and that they 
have been properly lubed.
Nothing will leave you sitting on the 
side of the road faster than a 
broken throttle cable

Tires. Make sure your tire pressure is correct, that there is proper tread depth, and that there is no weather checking on the sidewalks.

Lights and turn signals. This seems obvious, but check to make sure all lights are operational, including the hi-lo beam, turn signals, tail light/ brake light, license plate light, and even your speedo lights.

Brake system. Make sure that there are no leaks or cracks in your break lines. Be sure to check your break pads because running thin pads can ruin your rotors and will end up 
costing you a lot more than what a new set of pads would 
have cost you.

Filters. Check your air filter, especially if it hasn't been cleaned or replaced lately. A dirty air filter damages your engine and can greatly affect performance and make your ride not nearly as enjoyable as you want it to be.

Nuts and bolts. Complete a visual/ physical check of hardware throughout your bike.

Spokes. If your bike has spokes, be sure to do a quick check to make sure your spokes are tight. As you do, adjust according to the manual, and if you're not comfortable with doing this yourself, take your motorcycle to a shop and have the spoke checked by a professional. 

Saturday, 27 June 2015

GoPro: Babes Ride Out - A Motorcycle Story

There are places in the mind that host memories in time.

Of love, laughter and all the good rides.

Up mountains, up rocks, through deserts of heat,

Through valleys of rivers, with air clean and sweet,

The twist of a throttle, the shift of a gear

Where the soul is devoured, and the mind becomes clear.

Up on two wheels, I want to be there.