Building a Tupperdor – A Guide for Beginners

Building a Tupperdor - A guide for beginnersBuilding a tupperdor is a great way for beginner cigar smokers to start their collections and expand their

If you are anything like me, once you got started smoking cigars one of the first things you think about is buying more cigars to enjoy.  This will then lead you to point that you will need to figure out a way to store all your new treasures.

Your first thought may be that you need to go out and get a humidor.  I mean that is what you are supposed to store cigars in right?

At its core a humidor is a box to store cigars in an environment with controlled humidity. This is accomplished in two ways.  First a humidification element is placed inside and the second is an airtight seal.  This is where most low-cost humidors fail.  The lack of an airtight seal makes maintaining a consistent humidity level a struggle.

When you are first starting out a humidor doesn’t need to be something that you buy right away.  Most people make the mistake of buying a low-cost humidor when they are first starting out.  Almost all of the cheap or low-cost humidors are poorly constructed, which will lead to headaches when trying to maintain the proper humidity level in your humidor.

You don’t have to store your cigars in a humidor though.  A great way to store cigars is in a tupperdor.

A tupperdor uses the same principles that a humidor does, but does so by replacing the biggest cost in a humidor (the wooden box) with cheaper option (sealed plastic container).  The name is a play on combining Tupperware with humidor.  I’ve never actually made a tupperdor from actual Tupperware (any brand of seal-able plastic container would do).

Things to Consider Before Building a Tupperdor

The biggest thing to consider when building a tupperdor is what size container to us.  The size of the container will limit how many cigars you will be able to store, but it will also determine how much humidification you will need.

You shouldn’t pick a container that is too large unless you expect to have enough cigars to keep it at least half full at all times.  Having cigars in the tupperdor will also help regulate the humidity.

I prefer to a container that is clear.  That way I am able to monitor the humidity inside my tupperdor without opening it.  This isn’t a requirement, just another

Another thing to consider is you want to get a food grade container.  I choose to get containers that are BPA free.  This also is not a requirement, just personal preference.  Chances are any food grade container you purchase will be BPA free.  For example all of Rubbermaid’s containers are BPA free.    You can learn more about BPA and why you should avoid it here.

What You Will Need

Here is a list of the items I used to build my tupperdor.  I was able to order everything from Amazon and have it within a couple of days

ContainerRubbermaid 10 Cup From Amazon
HumidificationBoveda 65% Humidity Control Pack, 60gm From Amazon
HygrometerMieo digital HygrometerFrom Amazon
OptionalSpanish Cedar VeneerFrom Amazon

Building a Tupperdor

Step 1

The first step is to acquire your container. Keeping in mind everything mentioned above.  Acquire the container that best fits your needs.  For this tupperdor I got this 10 Cup Rubbermaid one from Amazon.

Tupperdor Container

Step 2

Wash the container. Wash, rinse and thoroughly dry your container.

*Optional Step

An optional step is to add Spanish cedar to your tupperdor.  Spanish Cedar will help to regulate the humidity levels in your tupperdor.  It also helps inhibit mold growth.

You have a few different options when adding Spanish Cedar to a tupperdor.  My choice was to add these Spanish Cedar pen blanks.  Their size allows them fit easily into my tupperdor.  They come in a pack of five, so if you have more than one tupperdor, you can put a couple in each.

Another option, depending on the size of container you use, are these Spanish Cedar Trays.  They are somewhat large for a tupperdor (7 inches x 12 inches), but if you container is large enough they would be a great addition

Step 3

Next you will need to add a humidification element to your tupperdor to regulate the humidity. For this the best choice is Boveda 65% 2-Way Humidity Control Pack, 60gm.  The packets come in different humidity levels.  For the beginner, I would suggest starting with the 65% level and then adjust from there.  The size of the container you choose will determine how many packets you will need.  If you are using a large container you may need more, but I would suggest buying two packets to start.  They come individually wrapped, so if you don’t use the second one at first, you can save it until the original one needs replaced or if you put together another tupperdor.

Typically you want to keep your cigars stored right around the 70%-72% level.  Due to a tupperdors smaller size and the fact that is completely airtight, you won’t need as much humidifciation to keep your cigars at the proper humidification level.

For my 10 cup container I have 1 of the 65% 60gm packets.  It seems to be holding a good stable humidity level with 15 cigars.  As I add more cigars though, I will probably have to add a second packet.

Step 4

We are almost there… Just a couple more steps.  The next thing you will want is a hygrometer monitor the humidity level in you tupperdor.  This is a low cost investment that will help protect your cigars.  Being able to monitor the humidity level in your tupperdor let you know if you need to add that second Boveda packet or maybe just buy a few more cigars to help stabilize the humidity level.  Having used a clear container will pay off at this point because you can have your hygrometer sitting so you can read it quickly and easily without having to open your tupperdor.

For this tupperdor, I am using this Mieo digital hygrometer/thermometer.  I have other digital hygrometers, but found this one on Amazon and decided to give it a try.  One thing that attracted me to this on is its large display.

Mieo Digital Hygrometer

Step 5

Now we are to the most important part…. The cigars.  You can now begin filling your tupperdor with cigars.  The size of your container will determine how many cigars your tupperdor will hold.  Just make sure not to fill it too full.  You don’t want it be so full that there is not room for air to get around all your cigars.  Besides, if you need more room, just put together another tupperdor or larger one.  If you are buying boxes of cigars, you may want to look at putting together a coolidor (link) for storing that many cigars.

I filled this tupperdoor with a bundle of Oliva 2nds that I purchased from Cigars International.  Even with these 15 Toro cigars there is plenty of room to add more cigars.

ready-to-go

Care and Maintenance

Now some things to keep in mind with your new tupperdor.  When you first get it put together and some cigars in it, it will take some time for the humidity to level out so don’t be overly concerned when you see the level bouncing around.  It will take a couple of weeks to stabilize.

Another thing is that since these containers seal so well, you will need to open your tupperdor up at least once a month to allow some fresh in.  This will help with keep mold at bay and also add some much needed air circulation.

Do you have a tupperdor?  Do you have any additional tips for building one?  I would love to hear how everyone else has put theirs together