Humidor without Spanish Cedar?

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Forum topic by SergeantSawDust posted 06-10-2012 05:28 AM 4817 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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173 posts in 2692 days

06-10-2012 05:28 AM

Topic tags/keywords: humidor mold prevention spanish cedar walnut maple

I am currently deployed in Kuwait and I have taken quite a liking to woodworking. Taken a liking so much in fact that I’ve started my own website ( and have been somewhat noticed amongst my peers as some of the projects I’ve done while here and in the past. While all of this is very cool I may have gotten in over my head by accepting a project to be a little more difficult that I originally intended.
I was asked to build a humidor for the battalion commander here and the construction doesn’t seem to be as much of an issue as the availability of wood here. I am on a post that is very fortunate to have a very nice woodshop with walnut, maple, ash, and oak available to work with. However after doing my research on the building of a humidor it seems unanimous that spanish cedar is the wood of choice. I really want to make a nice humidor. Something unique and exemplies army engineering, but my main concern is functionality.
One of the overseeing officers bought a kit that has the hygrometer and everything that’ll read the humidity, and some solution to help keep it around 70% which also seems to be the desired humidity for these cigars to be housed in. My main concern however is MOLD. Making something that is beautiful and unique… useless! Does anyone know of an odorless solution to help mitigate mold so I can construct this out of something other than spanish cedar?

-- Woodworking for the hobbyist woodworker.

6 replies so far

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 4158 days

#1 posted 06-10-2012 05:46 AM

I recommend doing the best with what you can get
in local woods and the client will be able to tell how
the humidor was made in Kuwait by a fellow soldier –
believe me the story will be more valuable to your
client and his family than perfect wood choices will
be. He can buy something else when he gets home
if he wants to but he’ll love the thing you made for
him out of what you could get.

I did look this up and wanted to recommend Lebanese
cedar but apparently the smell is considered a bad
thing for humidors. Understand that people in
countries like the USA can be snobbish about materials
due to the availability here of just about anything.

Spanish cedar is not even that exotic or costly. It
is used in guitars and you may be able to procure some
from a luthier in the area. Guitar makers use it because
it has similar stability and stiffness to mahogany but
weighs 20% less.

View SergeantSawDust's profile


173 posts in 2692 days

#2 posted 06-10-2012 05:54 AM

I may have answered my own question. According to, Mahogany is also a good species of wood to use, and I have access to that as well. Thanks Loren for the input as well. You’re right though. I can only do what I have access to. Thanks for your response..

-- Woodworking for the hobbyist woodworker.

View hunter71's profile


3441 posts in 3697 days

#3 posted 06-10-2012 01:14 PM

Here in Kabul there is a very active Cigar aficionado club. They give me some of the wooden cigar boxes for my simple projects. In investigating the “Spanish Cedar” I found that what is passed off as CEDAR for the shipping boxes isn’t cedar at all but Mahogany. The wood allows the transfer of moisture well, that is what you want. Many fine humidors are built with hard woods and work well when lined with just the “cigar box” type material. The R/H is what you need to watch, too much, mold, too little, well, you see my point. My feeling isn’t the materials as much as the regulation of humidity. From my archives I will add this web site, good smoke.

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View fatandy2003's profile


262 posts in 2754 days

#4 posted 06-10-2012 06:56 PM

There are 2 things that the lining of a humidor MUST repel: 1) Mold, 2) tobacco eating insects. Unfortunately for your situation, Spanish Cedar is the popular choice because it repels both the best while adding an aroma that is appealing to cigar aficionados. Mahogany has characteristics very similar to those of Spanish Cedar, without as strong of an odor.

However, serving in Kuwait, you should have an FPO or APO, right? If so, there are many websites that sell Spanish Cedar in sizes that are great for lining a humidor with. A few that come to mind are and You will pay a little more at these websites as they are selling at retail prices, but they ship via USPS Priority Mail and you will see your box in <5 business days. I am stationed in Naples, Italy and have the same problem. So whenever I make a humidor, I order my Cedar from Woodcraft. Just a thought…

-- -- Andy, “Those who expect to reap the blessings of liberty must undergo the fatigues of supporting it” - Thomas Paine

View Richard's profile


1927 posts in 3201 days

#5 posted 10-27-2014 07:21 PM

From what I have seen most people make the outside box from whatever looks good to them and then just line the inside with the spanish ceader so you only need a small amount of it at 1/8” to 1/4” thick. Getting that thru the APO or FPO should be easy enough.

View AlaskaGuy's profile


5351 posts in 2819 days

#6 posted 10-27-2014 08:59 PM

This video may answer some of your questions. I a video from fine Woodworking.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

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