Cigars come in many sizes and shapes and are described in terms of diameter and length. Common names for cigar size such as Corona, Lonsdale, Robusto and Churchill give a general indication of a stick’s size but the exact size of these cigars can differ from brand to brand.
Different sizes within an individual line of cigars will often have different characteristics or “tastes” because larger cigars will have more filler tobacco, tend to be more complex and will burn slower and cooler.
Length: Listed in either inches or centimeters (or both), although American cigars are almost always listed in inches.
Diameter: Ring gauge is the basic unit of measurement of the cigar’s diameter, based on 1/64” increments. When someone says a standard toro size is “6 by 50” for example, that means it is six inches long and 50/64ths of an inch thick.
Shape: All cigars can be divided into two categories: parejos, or the straight- sided cigars, and figurados, or irregular shapes (torpedoes or perfectos and the like).
Box-Pressed: Parejos all start out rounded and straight. However, some become squareish cigars known as box-pressed, after being placed into a tight-fitting box. While many factories still use the traditional method to “square off ” their cigars, others use more modern methods.
Square-Pressed: Also known as box-pressed, and occurs when cigars are inserted tightly into a box so as to press them into a perfectly square shape.