September 2012 Newsletter


September 2012
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Kurt's Corner
Lifetime Warranty

     Recently I have been asked some about the meaning behind our lifetime guarantee. We sum it here by saying, "XIKAR For Life" (#X4L for you hashtag junkies). In fact, our mission statement, which I wrote in 1999, states:

As The Best Thing to Happen to Cigars Since Fire™, XIKAR, Inc. is dedicated to providing value to cigar consumers through unique, artful and functional cigar tools sold at a fair price. XIKAR will provide these products through honest and ergonomic design to achieve superior form, feel and function. XIKAR stands behind its products through a lifetime total satisfaction warranty. 

As our business grew, many asked me to further define "Lifetime Guarantee":
"Does it mean we can exchange over the counter?" "Yes."
"Does it mean we can return hassle-free?" "Yes."
"At no cost?" "Yes!"

     In fact, it means what it has always meant, that at XIKAR we guarantee everything we say, sell and do, unconditionally, for life. Anything less is not a lifetime guarantee. Anything less would not be "Lifetime" nor be a "Guarantee". Anything less would be a sales pitch!
     Why do we do this? We do this because we are concerned about our customers and consumers. We do this because we care about your experience with our products and our company. We do this because we want a lifetime relationship with you, and we believe that, like a marriage, it takes a commitment with a lot of work behind it. Ultimately, we do this because it's just who we are.
     I can't change who I am any more than I can change my height! And since Lifetime Guarantee is who I am, it is also who XIKAR is. I can't change it, I won't change it.
      This month we continue to show our new introductions from the August trade show. Enjoy them with full faith in their quality, and function, backed by a lifetime warranty!

Kurt Van Keppel
President & Founder
New Pulsar, triple flame lighter!
     The new Pulsar lighter features a side-squeeze lighting action to ignite the powerful triple jet flame. A built-in 7mm punch doubles as a dust cover for the fill valve and an over-sized adjustment wheel makes fine tuning the jet flame a breeze. By placing the trigger along the lighter body, one's finger is no longer perilously close to the flame (no burned fingertips!).


XIKAR U: Hygrometers

     Our hygrometers are manufactured to our exact specifications for long term accuracy and minimal maintenance. They accurately display the relative humidity in the range of 20% to 95% and temperature in your humidor in Fahrenheit and Celsius. With a one step calibration button and a simple salt test, you are ready to go!
     Tobacconist University Tip: While it is helpful to use a hygrometer when quickly checking the condition of your cigars, there is no substitute for your sense of touch. Every connoisseur knows that cigars must be felt to ascertain their condition and disposition. A cigar should feel silky and smooth to the touch. A well conditioned cigar should yield slightly when gently squeezed between your fingers. The wrapper should not crack or make a sound. When you release the depression, the cigar should slowly regain its shape. 
Featured Product:
Envoy Cases
   Each Envoy Cigar Case holds one, two or three cigars up to 54 ring gauge each, keeping any smoke safe with a modern style. With top-grain armada leather, each piece has a well-dressed appearance and a soft feel. Contrast stitching secures the leather, giving it a contemporary look. The inner lining of the crush-proof case, crafted with genuine Spanish cedar, holds the ambient humidity of the cigar and projects the fresh cedar smell of a humidor on every opening. Stylish metal caps cover each end, reinforcing the strength of the case.
These telescoping cases can hold up to the following size of the Churchill-length cigars:
Envoy Single: 1- 58 Ring Gauge
Envoy Triple: 3- 52 Ring Gauge or 2- 54 Ring Gauge


Upcoming XIKAR Events

     There are a lot of great events across the country this fall for you to check out. Here are a few coming up from our XIKAR retailers.  
9/20 Fidel's Thursday Night Football in KC, MO 5-9 p.m.
Smoke Ring Cigars in Webster, TX

9/21 Humidour Cigar Shop in Cockeysville, MD

9/21 R and R Cigars in Tuscaloosa, AL

9/22 Gala and Fundraiser in Bethlehem, PA

9/22 Briar Shoppe in Houston, TX

9/28 Draper’s Little Puff in Washington DC

9/29 WiseAsh Cigars in Smyrna, GA

9/29 Monte’s Big Smoke in Albuquerque, NM
10/2 Harbor Cigars in Destin, FL
10/4 Pit Stop Smoke Stop in Schererville, IN 5-9 p.m.
10/5 MilanTobacconist's 100th Anniversary in Roanoke, VA 1-7 p.m.
10/12 Neptune Cigars in Miami, FL 6-9 p.m.
10/12 Finck’s Cigar Factory Outlet in Helotes, TX 4-8 p.m.
10/13 Washington Cigar Spirits Festival in Snoqualmie, WA
10/13 Stetson Cigars in Harker Heights, TX 2-6 p.m.        
10/17 Cigar Cigar in Sugarland, TX 6-10 p.m.
10/19 Corona Cigar- “Trick or Trade” in Orlando, FL 2-8 p.m.
10/20 Tampa Cigar Bash/ Tampa Humidor in FL 12-5 p.m.
10/22 En Fuego Golf Tournament in McKinney, TX 1 p.m. 
10/25 Havana Jim in Allen, TX 5-8 p.m.
10/26 Cigar Time in Missouri, TX 6-9 p.m.
XIKAR takes Europe!
      Kurt, Scott and Tim traveled to Europe these last couple weeks visiting our retailers in France, Belgium and Germany. Check out more pictures on our Facebook page.

Stars with XIKAR!

     Check out Robert Downey Jr. above sporting one of our travel cases. He even added Iron Man stickers!
     Hutch (Scrimshaw artist for XIKAR) made this cutter for Sylvester Stallone's character in the original "Expendables" movie in 2010. Hutch received a personal note from Stallone when he found out he got to keep the cutter.
     Hutch also made a new Mammoth cutter, a few pieces of jewelry and custom pistol grips for "Expendables 2" that premiered last month. 

The note reads, "For Hutch- Great job! Plus the cutter is fantastic-- It made Arnold Schwarzenegger jealous! Best, Sylvester Stallone"
(click picture for larger view)


XIKAR For Life Hall of Fame

     The XIKAR Hall of Fame Award is designed to recognize an individual who has demonstrated exceptional support and commitment of the XIKAR organization. Nominees are selected based on their affiliation with XIKAR plus their passion and commitment for the cigar industry.

Carolee Martin
Fraser Monk
Jeff McDowell
Robbie Morton
Daniel Dwyer
Michael “Moe” O’Donovan

Each year, four individuals are inducted into the XIKAR Hall of Fame. The next inductee will be announced in December. All retailers and consumers can submit their nominees to XIKAR at
XIKAR Product Reviews

Hygrometer and 50ct Humidifier by The Cigar Crook

     The design of the humidifier is very sleek and well thought out. Read the reviews


Habano Colorado by Kuzi's Cigar Catalog
     The grit has more chocolately notes with a hint of sweetness. Read full review

Habano² by Halfwheel
     XIKAR says that the cigar was born as the result of the travels and life experiences of co-founders Kurt Van Keppel and Scott Almsberger. Read full review

Habano² by The Cigar Inspector
     On all three samples, both the draw and the burn were as close to perfection as you can get. Read full review

Pipeline Lighter by Nickrdoty Watch the review
Tech Lighter by The Cigar Crook Watch the review



Hall of Fame Inductee: Michael "Moe" O'Donovan

     Our third 2012 XIKAR FOR LIFE Hall of Fame inductee is Michael “Moe” O’Donovan of the Tali-Banned Cigar Aficionado Club (TCAC). This is a social, not-for-profit club, made up of US and coalition military, US and other nation governmental agencies and contractors. The TCAC is dedicated to the enjoyment of premium, hand-made cigars. O’Donovan founded it in July of 2009 at a small contractor’s camp with 8 interested “aficionados.”  After about 2 months, O’Donovan moved the meetings to the U.S. Embassy to make it available to more people.
     The club grew rapidly and the word spread. Due to distances, security threats and other considerations, they soon began forming additional chapters around Kabul and eventually around the whole country.
 Carolee Martin was an early member of one of the new chapters (Tiki Hut Camp Phoenix) and later became the first female chapter president (Camp Gibson) and the first member of the XIKAR FOR LIFE Hall of Fame.
     “When I started up the club in 2009, I reached out to about 300 cigar makers, retailers, wholesalers, and companies like XIKAR that produced cigar accessories as well as premium cigars. One of the earliest responders was XIKAR sending me a package containing several different cutters, punches and lighters. These items immediately became the most sought-after and desired raffle prizes.” said O’Donovan. The TCAC offers a raffle at every meeting ($1 a ticket) and the prizes include XIKAR cutters, lighters, cigars, humidors and other cigar accessories.
     “Over the years I was lucky enough to win two lighters, a punch and a XIKAR scissors tool. I carry the tool with me wherever I go because it is compact (fits easily in my ID badge case) and can be used for more than cutting cigars and filling butane lighters. It’s also a novelty to someone who has never seen one because of the unique way it folds into itself and the fact you can use it for both Figurados and “regular” shapes.” said O’Donovan.
     “I believe the reason that XIKAR products are so popular is because they are quality with a capital “Q.” From their design and reliability to functionality, they’re the best. The cutter blades stay sharp and last forever, lighters that produce a serious flame for all weather conditions. Everyone advertises their wind-proof lighters but they can’t hold a flame to XIKAR (pun intended).” said O’Donovan.


Football Contest Winner: Congratulations to the winner of a Xi1 Cutter and 5ct Travel Case, Dolphins fanatic-- Michael Martinez! He had the best picture showing his team pride incorporating XIKAR! Thanks to all who entered, it was a tough choice as usual. 

     October is coming so that means… OKTOBERFEST! Send us a picture of you celebrating Oktoberfest to Fill those mugs up and always remember, it doesn’t hurt to incorporate XIKAR into your entry (hint, hint). Our favorite entry will receive the Ultra lighter/cutter combo! Entries must be submitted by 10/18/12 11:59 p.m. CST. The winner will be announced 10/19 in our next newsletter and on Facebook/Twitter.

Rusty de la Croix Album!
Kurt's brother-in-law lives in L.A. and is in a couple of great bands. Check out his latest release of a rocking blues band album, Rusty de la Croix.

Tali-Banned Cigar Aficionado Club

     Interested in learning more about O'Donovan and the Tali-Banned Cigar Aficionado Club? Check out their website

Copyright © 2012 XIKAR, Inc., All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:

PO Box 025757, Kansas City, MO 64102