Recently, I have reviewed two of the top v-cutters on the market, the XIKAR VX V-Cutter and the Colibri V-Cut. Both are fairly easy to find either in retail locations or online sites and in practice, both cost about the same amount, more importantly, both feature a reverse v-cutter that removes the outside of the cap before penetrating the inside, the opposite of how most v-cutters traditionally have cut. Like Patrick Lagreid did earlier, today’s a look at how the two cutters directly compare, side-by-side.
This category is not as easy as you may think to judge between the two. The Colibri is quite a bit heavier, and features a high quality feel to the exterior of the cutter that never seemed to get marred in any appreciable way, even though it was carried around in my pocket and the pocket of my bag with lighters and other cutters for months. The lighter XIKAR product sees its finish wear off after a half year, although it’s seen much more use than the Colibri in testing. Having said all of that, the Colibri’s Achilles heel seems to be the opening mechanism, which has a tendency to become sticky periodically the more you use it.
The XIKAR XV wins this category,barely.
Physically, the differences are immediately obvious: the XIKAR is about a quarter longer than the Colibri, although the width is roughly the same. You use two finger holes to slide the cutter in the XIKAR, while you push two indentions on opposite ends to cut cigars with the Colibri. The actual hole you put cigars in is noticeably larger from the Colibri, as is the actual blade itself.
The rubber on the main body of the Colibri V-Cut is soft to the touch, a nice contrast to the sleek metal that makes up the top and the bottom sections. The colors that are available all contrast very well with the dark color of the main part of the body. In addition, the knob that you push to release the spring loaded section is well integrated into the overall design, with the Colibri name underneath.
In contrast, the XIKAR VX V-Cutter is simplicity personified with an extremely sleek overall look. All of the elements work well together visually, but I could understand of some people find it to be considerably more boring compared to the tank like Colibri V-Cut.
The Colibri takes this one.
The stainless steel blade of the Colibri V-Cut is opened by pushing down on a small nub on the bottom end of the cutter, which releases the spring loaded section upwards. You then put the cap of the cigar into the indention and push down on the top section, which results in a smooth motion that forces the actual cutter itself through the cap of the cigar. As the blade cuts through the cap and comes to the end of its journey, it locks in place with an audible click and stays that way until you push down on the trigger again.
Unfortunately, the small nob that you push down to release the top half sticks out noticeably from the rest of the body of the cutter and it has gotten caught on my pocket and the edge of the pocket of my bag that I carry my laptop in on certain occasions during the time I have used it. The weight of the Colibri V-Cut can also be an issue, especially if you are carrying it in your pocket for an extended period of time, as you always know it is there.
In contrast, the XIKAR VX V-Cutter is basically two pieces of metal and is opened and closed on a track simply by moving one finger. The action is smooth and simple, never catching or causing an issue. In addition, the concave design allows for you to lay your cigar on the back of the cutter when it is sitting on a flat surface, which means the next time you are in a place where there is not a proper ash tray, your cigar won’t have to sit hanging off of a table.
XIKAR wins again.
Both cutters feature the reverse v-cut motion, the only difference is the depth of the cut. I found the Colibri to deliver more open draws, sometimes too open. That being said, neither suffered from causing any tears, which was the main goal of the reverse v-cutter.
XIKAR wins this.
The XIKAR VX V-Cutter retails for $59.95 for three of the five finishes, and $69.95 for the other two (Cut Mesh and Carbon Fiber), although you can find them selling for as little as $40 in stores. The Colibri V-Cut sells for $39 regardless of accent color, and comes enclosed in a gift box. Warranty-wise, the Colibri V-Cut features a two-year warranty that covers defects to the product. As with all the XIKAR products, the easy-to-use/no questions asked lifetime replacement warranty that will either repair or a replace a damaged or defective unit is hard to beat, and puts the XIKAR VX V-Cutter over the top in this category.
Make no mistake, both the XIKAR VX V-Cutter and the Colibri V-Cut are excellent v-cutters, and either one will perform quite well even under the harshest of conditions. Having said that, the XIKAR beats the Colibri handily by a score of 4-1, losing out only on the appearance category, although for those who prefer a loose draw, the score might read 3-2. While in many ways they are similar, they look and feel different—and occasionally they cut cigars differently. Having said all of that, while I have used both for months to compare to each other, I find myself reaching again and again for the XIKAR for its combination of clean styling, ease of use and lighter weight.
You can purchase the XIKAR XV V-Cutter from site sponsor Atlantic Cigar Co.