Hand rolling cigars is an incredibly difficult skill that can only be mastered after years of practice. If you’ve watched any videos on cigar rolling, you will probably agree that the step that seems the most straightforward and simple is the bunching of the filler leaves. However, even this seemingly basic step can be incredibly complex. There are four main techniques for bunching filler tobacco for straight, or parejo, cigars: machine assisted, book, accordion, and entubado.
Machine Assisted Bunching
Machine assisted bunching involves spreading the binder and fillers on a machine called the Lieberman Bunching Machine which mechanically rolls them. Despite the use of a machine, cigars rolled using machine assisted bunching are still considered hand-made premiums.
Possibly the most popular technique used in hand-made cigars, book bunching involves stacking filler leaves flat on top of one another and then folding them, like a book. This method is the fastest of the hand-bunching techniques, which is why it is so popular. However, this technique can result in a tighter draw than the other two hand-bunching techniques.
Accordion bunching requires the roller to fold each individual filler leaf (like a book) and then stack the folded leaves on top of one another. The multitude of folds allows for greater airflow, and therefore a better draw.
The most complex and time-consuming bunching technique is entubado bunching. For this style of bunching, each filler leaf is rolled individually and then bound together. This bunching technique is very labor-intensive so is not often used for large scale production. When it is used, it is a matter of pride for the roller and the brand.
For instance, PDR cigar brand details their entubado technique on the front page of their site.
For videos and more information on cigar bunching techniques visit Tobacconist University on cigar rolling.4 Main Cigar Bunching Techniques by Kayla Becker