Mold Plume debate

Discussion in 'General Cigar Discussion' started by bluue13, Jul 26, 2011.

  1. I'm no expert. But, it looks like mold to me.
  2. bluue13

    bluue13 Well-Known Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    I usually don't either, and I've never had a problem, but I do monitor the ones in my humi constantly. For whatever reason I was struck with a suspicion of mold this time around that turned out to be correct. I'm glad I didn't just toss them in with the others!
  3. Tall Paul

    Tall Paul "insecure little bitch"

    May 11, 2011
    Derry, NH

    Great link Big Jake pictures go along way and that really clears up my foggyness on the subjuct.

    Thanks Again!
  4. grateful1

    grateful1 Oh My!

    Feb 6, 2006

    There was a problem a few years ago with humidity and shipping of Anejos (w/humi-paks). A lot got moldy and guys started to take them off to help air them out.

    Most folks I know keep them on and in cello...but it's a preference. do most seem to keep smokes IN tubos....or IN the original box.
  5. Dapp

    Dapp New Member

    Jul 26, 2011
    Alexandria VA
    This is what I've learned from many years in the biz. Plume can begin to form in as little as 2 months. mold can set in, in as little as 2 days. Now one of the ways to help determine if you got plume or mold is mold will almost always grow right back after wiped off. So if you have the time wipe off the stick and put in a bag or whatever by ITSELF and in a few days if it is back then you have mold my friend. Also mold will not come off very easily.(most of the time). Where as plume will rub right off. Mold also will stain the wrapper. So if you wipe it off and there is a light or dark spot where the (stuff) was then you have mold. Now don't forget as long as the mold isn't on the foot, the cigar can be saved. Now I understand most people will just throw it away understandably, but if you have something rare or very expensive then you might want to read on. If the mold is only on the wrapper and not the foot you must first remove it from the rest of your stuff. Now gently wipe down the stick with something dry. Do your best to remove all visible mold. place the stick in a dry box(empty cigar box) with a humipak. Make sure you put the humipak or beads,gels any kind of sterile humidification device as to ensure the stick doesn't dry out. let it sit in the box for about two weeks, if the mold doesn't reappear then you in the clear. If however it does reappear then at this point repeat the same steps but this time take a micro fiber cloth and LIGHTLY moisten it with water treated with a VERY SMALL amount of bleach.About one cap for every gallon. Then take the cloth and gently wipe down the cigar. Now be sure to use a LIGHTLY moistened cloth. You don't want to wash the cigar, just remove the mold and kill the spores. Then place in the dry box again for another two weeks. This has always worked for me. I would suggest trying this on some cheapy sticks just so you can get the moisture lvl right on the cloth. And get the feel for what your doing. Now back to the topic..... Mold, when it grows, has a structure to it. If you have a magnifying glass you can see how the mold grows in shafts with pollups at the tip. Like a bunch of lolly pops strung together. Or even hair like. Plume on the other hand is more of a powder like substance. It is just the oils of the tobacco moving there way to the surface and then crystallizing on the wrapper. Its is usually more uniform then what I can see in the, pic but I have seen plume form in small areas like that. But again if you wipe it off and it leaves a stain on the wrapper then there is no question that you have mold. I hope this helps those in need. And if anyone can add or correct anything I put up please do.
  6. BGlover

    BGlover New Member

    Apr 17, 2011
    I am very glad to see this topic today. I am on vacation in Panama City Beach with my wife and son this week and we had a rainy day today so I dropped off the family at the movies and I hit up a local B&M for a couple cigars and a little peace and quiet. Walked into their humidor that had an incredible selection at first glance. All kinds of Opus, GOF's, Tats of all kinds, LP pigs and rats, and the list goes on. As I moved to the back of the room I found a shelf with several vitolas of one of my favorite sticks, the La Riqueza. These things looked like they had been sitting in a cheese aging room, not a humidor. The owner (I assume) walked in to ask if I needed help and I "informed" him he needed to take a look at his Requeza's as they were fully molded. He quickly informed me that was not mold, but plume. He proceeded to show me his friggin cabinet of Padron that would make any cigar lover drool and was very proud of the "ploom" on many of these. I quickly realized that there was no use in arguing here. I am by no means a cigar expert but I have researched this issue a lot and feel pretty safe that i know mold when i see it especially as rampant as it was in this humidor. I can't imagine how many 10's of thousands of dollars of inventory there was in this walk in humidor that was at risk of being eaten up!! It was painful to see!
  7. BlindedByScience

    BlindedByScience Proud Father of a brave U.S. Marine

    Jan 31, 2005
    Vancouver, WA recommend using chlorine bleach on cigars that are to be smoked...?? Really...??

    I recommend not smoking moldy cigars or buying from a B&M that has mold issues. Better for your health, methinks......:whistling:
  8. Drumhead

    Drumhead New Member

    Jul 2, 2011
    Greenville, SC
    I would suggest you not visit that shop anymore. I cant figure out what kind of shop owner would keep his RH higher than 70%. I've only seen it higher in one shop and they had mold growing on half their inventory!

    Looks like mold to me. Based on what I have seen, plum has a more uniform spread whereas mold is sporadic in the way that it develops.
  9. Devil Doc

    Devil Doc When Death smiles, Corpsmen smile back

    Oct 16, 2005
    New England
    In my 40 yrs of cigar smoking I can assure you gentlemen it is almost never plume. And when it is, the owner and his employees with be smoking them. You'll never get a shot at them.

  10. tomthirtysix

    tomthirtysix Wishing I was as cool as Phil

    Dec 27, 2006
    Long Island, NY
    To echo BBS's thoughts, you have "many years in the business," are the GM of a shop, and recommend smoking bleach? Hysterical.

    When you get a chance, make sure you head over to the Intro forum and post a proper introduction. Thanks.
  11. bluue13

    bluue13 Well-Known Member

    Jan 2, 2010

    Yeah I did a double take on that one too. If you're even thinking of wiping your cigars down with bleach its prob better to just toss it! :laugh:
  12. JHolmes763

    JHolmes763 Drinkin' the koolaid

    Oct 12, 2006
    Michigan (Thumb)
    It's one capful to a gallon of water (as recommended). I wouldn't bother with the hassle and toss it either way, though.
  13. Wow! I am impressed surprised you guys read that big block of text. :whistling:

    edit: More surprised than actually impressed.
  14. Dapp

    Dapp New Member

    Jul 26, 2011
    Alexandria VA
    Listen guys.. A cap in a gallon of distilled water is not enough to leave any trace on or in your cigar.Therefore all the people who started typing b4 doing a little research or thinking, I suggest you do.Now if you follow the procedure I suggested then there will be no chlorine in your cigars. All of the extremely minute amount will evaporate. There will be no chlorine in your cigar. Your are simply trying to kill the spores. I know it sounds crazy to most of you but think about it.. A rag that is barely wet at all with such a small amount of chlorine is not going to contaminate your cigar. It is totally safe. And just food for thought, The bottle of distilled water you buy at the store which is so (pure) is in a plastic bottle which leeches far more harmful chemicals into the water that you put in your humidors, and in turn your cigars then the procedure I explained earlier. I figured a few people would see the word bleach and automatically have something to say without thinking. That's Hysterical.... If you disagree that's fine. But there is no need to be a ass.
  15. Acclaym

    Acclaym Moderation in Moderation

    Jun 14, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    I'm glad this topic popped up again because I had questions about some sticks I was just gifted. A gentleman I purchased a humi from included several CCs but they all had white "spots" about a half inch apart and an eighth wide, evenly distributed around the entirety of the cigars. After inquiring further, he told me he had let the humi run dry for about two months and that it was ploom. Finding this explanation odd but having little experience, I thought it might be ploom, but the spots weren't easily rubbed off. After bringing this dry humi up to proper rh the spots have now vanished. No pics for now sorry guys, just seeing if I could get some opinions! Need to know if I should quarantine my new humidor!
  16. bluue13

    bluue13 Well-Known Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    We need to start using some paragraphs, folks! Break up the text a little! :laugh: :sign:
  17. Dozerhead

    Dozerhead New Member

    Hell, if a cigar is so damn moldy to where one might consider wiping it off with a bleach solution then it is time to toss the sumbitch!

    BTW, if I am ever in a B&M where the cigars are moldy then that will be the last time I ever set foot in that place again. You're far better off spending your hard earned dough with one of the reputable vendors here. You won't have to worry about someone literally blowing cigar smoke up your arse trying to convince you that it is plume. Just my 2 cents.
  18. whopper

    whopper Active Member

    May 21, 2008
    Thanks for the explanation and suggestion. I think I'll pass on using this method though.
  19. Mr Peat

    Mr Peat Rich Perelman, "Loren you have a Godlike Presence.

    Nov 4, 2005
    A place near you...
    The Hemingway Maduros was also hit with the mold during that same shipment. Due to a shipment that was delayed in transit if I remember correctly.
  20. {tpc}

    {tpc} Professional Poker Tournament Loser

    Feb 20, 2008
    Berkley, MI
    If I walk into a humidor and anything in there has mold on it, I walk right out. There are enough places to buy cigars that don't have moldy ones next to them that I can and would rather buy from. So to the OP if it looks like mold, it likely is. I would tell the owner and go somewhere else, probably for quite awhile.

    As for the possible removal method, I can't think of a cigar rare enough that I would try wiping it down with a bleach solution so I can smoke it. If its moldy just toss it away. Say you wipe down the wrapper as described, how do you know exactly how far the mold has got and where exactly it is?

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