Poor Man’s Humidor Humidification Sticks

Posted: 8th September 2013 by YardGnome
Categories: 1 Star, Project, Useful

Humidity Sticks in Ziplock HumidorZip Fizz Humidity Stick in a travel humidor1 Star difficulty rating

Here is a project for the cig­ar smok­er who does­n’t like pay­ing a pre­mi­um price for retail humid­i­fi­ca­tion prod­ucts. It makes use of tubes or small con­tain­ers you may already have lying around the house. I like “Zip­fizz” pow­dered ener­gy drink con­tain­ers because they are sim­i­lar in diam­e­ter cig­ars and lay right among your sticks in what­ev­er type of humi­dor you may be using; be it a stan­dard table-top ver­sion, ziplock bag, or a small trav­el humidor.

Some small tubes to useZip­fizz is a “healthy, vit­a­min enriched energy/sports drink” that you may want to check out if you don’t already know about it. The con­tain­ers have a flip-top lid which is con­ve­nient for when recharg­ing it as a humid­i­fi­ca­tion stick. Anoth­er tube I use is from Air­borne tablets. It is a bit larg­er, but the extra capac­i­ty means it will sup­ply humid­i­ty for a larg­er vol­ume and/or you won’t have to recharge it near­ly as often.

Tubes for making humidor humidifier sticks with holes drilled in the lidsThe first step is to drill a hole in the cap of what­ev­er you use. For the Zip­fizz tube I used a 3/8″ drill bit. Use a brad point bit, if you have one — it will keep the bit from walk­ing around while you are try­ing to get the hole start­ed. For the Air­borne tube a 1/2″ spade drill bit fit down the mid­dle of the inner sleeve in the cap.

Paper towels rolled up to the size needed to fit in the tubesNext you will need some paper tow­els. For the tubes I’m demon­strat­ing with, the half-sheet paper tow­els are con­ve­nient, but you can eas­i­ly cut any paper tow­el to the size you need. If using the half-sheet tow­els, start rolling one up from a short side, until the roll is big enough to fill the tube and cut the extra off. It does­n’t need to be a tight fit, as it needs to be able to slide in with­out dif­fi­cul­ty. My Zip­fizz tube used about 4/5ths of  a sheet. The Air­borne tube took a full 3 sheets. Now, slide the rolled towel(s) into the tube and mark, or oth­er­wise note where you need to cut it off so you can close the lid on it. If using an Air­borne tube, note that it has a “shock absorber” sleeve which extends into the tube which you will need to allow for — or to per­mit it to hold more paper tow­el, and as a result, more flu­id capac­i­ty, you can cut that springy pro­tu­ber­ance off.

Propylene Glycol and water

All that is left to do is sat­u­rate the paper tow­el with your propy­lene gly­col (PG) solu­tion and your humid­i­ty stick is ready to use. I rec­om­mend PF over plain, dis­tilled water, as it reg­u­lates the humid­i­ty to 70%, and is also a mold and bac­te­ria inhibitor. You can use a pre­mixed solu­tion mar­ket­ed specif­i­cal­ly for the cig­ar mar­ket, but you can save mon­ey by get­ting pure propy­lene gly­col and mix­ing it your­self. I found a pint bot­tle on Ama­zon for $20 (free ship­ping with Ama­zon Prime), which makes 2 pints of 50/50 solu­tion. Com­pare this with a pint bot­tle of Xikar solu­tion for $16 on Ama­zon (free ship­ping with Ama­zon Prime). Includ­ed in the pho­to to the right is a con­tact solu­tion squeeze bot­tle in which I make up my PG mix — mak­ing it a sim­ple mat­ter to fill and refill my Poor Man’s Humi­dor Humid­i­fi­ca­tion Sticks.

I hope this has been help­ful. Obvi­ous­ly, your best sav­ings from mak­ing these would be by using tubes/containers you already have, vs. going out and buy­ing some prod­ucts just to get the con­tain­ers. Let’s brain­storm togeth­er, in the com­ments below, about con­tain­ers we may already have around. And of course, please leave com­ments with any of your oth­er thoughts about this project, too.

  1. […] in cat lit­ter beads, there is a great  “how to” on how to make eco­nom­i­cal humid­i­fiers at http://www.stufficanmake.com using com­mon items found around the house and propylene […]

  2. YardGnome says:

    Fur­ther expe­ri­ence with these has shown that it is bet­ter to not roll the paper tow­el too tight, but rather leave an open­ing down the mid­dle. This increas­es the sur­face area avail­able for the humid­i­ty (mois­ture) it the paper tow­el to more effi­cient­ly move out of the hole in the cap. It also bet­ter facil­i­tates recharg­ing, as the flu­id can soak in along the inner chan­nel, instead of hav­ing to soak in, slow­er, from just the exposed end.

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