Cohiba Behike 52's - Authentic?


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Hey all,

Just joined the forum, as I see there are some experts here, and I'm hoping that some of you can help me decide what to do with this box of BHK 52's I received last Monday. Here is the link to the photo album. Below is my thought process and things I checked and took into account, but I would really appreciate any extra insight you may have.

The box is from a reputable online vendor, and it was sealed when I received it. I know they are a legitimate seller and claim to buy all merchandise from authorized distributors.

Someone attempted to remove all serial markings, even the micro ones. I was able to salvage the serial number and it checks out as legitimate BHK 52's. The seal does have UV marks, and it appears to be a fully authentic seal.

The price was not "too good to be true." They are from October 2014, which did throw me off a bit.

Every aspect of the box and packaging appears high quality and authentic.

The cigar bands slide up and down the cigars fairly easily, and one was slid already when I first opened the box. I compared the ring gauge to a Cohiba Robusto (50), and it does seem 2 hairs bigger, so I believe the ring gauge is accurate at 52.

Some of the bands don't meet exactly square on the back. Some people said these cigars should be impeccable, but by gut is that this is acceptable. No worse really than my COROS.

The feet of the cigars, while a clean cut, are not always perpendicular, meaning the cigar stands at an angle instead of perfectly straight. This seems no worse than other Cubans I have, but not the "impeccable" quality that people seem to expect of the BHK line.

Something else I've heard is that the thickness of the top and gold bands should be equal. These aren't super far off, but I can tell they aren't equal. I don't see this as a red flag, because I've seen many other examples online where these are not the same thickness.

All other aspects of the band: the white boxes, heads, holograms, embossing, color and clarity, seem to be on point.

Using a blacklight (and also my wife's UV fingernail thing works a lot better), I see zero markings on the band. I found information that said this would have started in early 2014, so I was really really hoping to see illuminated squares on these bands. I looked close, and I'm 99% sure they're not even faintly there. There aren't any codes written on the band either, at least on the exposed portions. Is this a red flag?

My eyes are telling me green flags, and I know that smoking one is the ultimate test but my gut tells me there is something suspect, and it started with the 2014 date feeling too good to be true.

I've written already to the seller, and to Cohiba last week, to get their input on all this, but I would appreciate anything you guys might have.

Thanks,

Steve

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You need to remove the name of the vendor from your original post immediately. That's one of the "commandments" of the forum. You should really read up on forum rules and introduce yourself before making a first post as well.

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5 minutes ago, taylorgov2 said:

You need to remove the name of the vendor from your original post immediately. That's one of the "commandments" of the forum. You should really read up on forum rules and introduce yourself before making a first post as well.

Sorry about that, it's fixed. I will check the rules and make an introduction post soon. Just wanted to get this cleared up and out of my mind first!

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4 hours ago, Stev067 said:

Hey all,

Just joined the forum, as I see there are some experts here, and I'm hoping that some of you can help me decide what to do with this box of BHK 52's I received last Monday. Here is the link to the photo album. Below is my thought process and things I checked and took into account, but I would really appreciate any extra insight you may have.

The box is from a reputable online vendor, and it was sealed when I received it. I know they are a legitimate seller and claim to buy all merchandise from authorized distributors.

Someone attempted to remove all serial markings, even the micro ones. I was able to salvage the serial number and it checks out as legitimate BHK 52's. The seal does have UV marks, and it appears to be a fully authentic seal.

The price was not "too good to be true." They are from October 2014, which did throw me off a bit.

Every aspect of the box and packaging appears high quality and authentic.

The cigar bands slide up and down the cigars fairly easily, and one was slid already when I first opened the box. I compared the ring gauge to a Cohiba Robusto (50), and it does seem 2 hairs bigger, so I believe the ring gauge is accurate at 52.

Some of the bands don't meet exactly square on the back. Some people said these cigars should be impeccable, but by gut is that this is acceptable. No worse really than my COROS.

The feet of the cigars, while a clean cut, are not always perpendicular, meaning the cigar stands at an angle instead of perfectly straight. This seems no worse than other Cubans I have, but not the "impeccable" quality that people seem to expect of the BHK line.

Something else I've heard is that the thickness of the top and gold bands should be equal. These aren't super far off, but I can tell they aren't equal. I don't see this as a red flag, because I've seen many other examples online where these are not the same thickness.

All other aspects of the band: the white boxes, heads, holograms, embossing, color and clarity, seem to be on point.

Using a blacklight (and also my wife's UV fingernail thing works a lot better), I see zero markings on the band. I found information that said this would have started in early 2014, so I was really really hoping to see illuminated squares on these bands. I looked close, and I'm 99% sure they're not even faintly there. There aren't any codes written on the band either, at least on the exposed portions. Is this a red flag?

My eyes are telling me green flags, and I know that smoking one is the ultimate test but my gut tells me there is something suspect, and it started with the 2014 date feeling too good to be true.

I've written already to the seller, and to Cohiba last week, to get their input on all this, but I would appreciate anything you guys might have.

Thanks,

Steve

Firstly I very much wish you well, and hope that your cigars are legit. 

I would suggest that cigars are never perfect in observation, only perfect in the smoking. 

All of your comments seem to desire a level of quality, which is guaranteed and without question.   I would kindly suggest that if you want this peace of mind, you either need to buy from a supplier like FOH, or buy in person, where you can stipulate all of your levels of quality control. 

Without wishing to be mean, it seems you are wanting first class quality control, for bargain basement prices. Sadly the main buffers of quality control, are performed outside of Cuba, and there is a gradient of add on premiums for, grading/box checking/picture sending etc etc. 

Again I wish you all the best, but from reading your post, I would suggest you're the kind of customer, who needs to pay that extra premium for peace of mind it offers. 

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52 minutes ago, 99call said:

Firstly I very much wish you well, and hope that your cigars are legit. 

I would suggest that cigars are never perfect in observation, only perfect in the smoking. 

All of your comments seem to desire a level of quality, which is guaranteed and without question.   I would kindly suggest that if you want this peace of mind, you either need to buy from a supplier like FOH, or buy in person, where you can stipulate all of your levels of quality control. 

Without wishing to be mean, it seems you are wanting first class quality control, for bargain basement prices. Sadly the main buffers of quality control, are performed outside of Cuba, and there is a gradient of add on premiums for, grading/box checking/picture sending etc etc. 

Again I wish you all the best, but from reading your post, I would suggest you're the kind of customer, who needs to pay that extra premium for peace of mind it offers. 

I appreciate the feedback. If it sounds like I'm crazy, that's just the culmination of me being very new to fine cigars (this was my 2nd box), and being a bit OCD. I do tend to go down rabbit holes and definitely did with this, exploring every possible thing to look for, and what people have said in past authenticity discussions. The one thing I will challenge you on though... I paid $800 for this box, which I assumed was not a bargain basement price as you put it, not to mention these aren't commonly available to buy. I don't see any for sale on FOH, and also hadn't heard that FOH was superior either (I like the forum though and I will probably place an order at some point). The vendor I bought from, is touted as being reputable, so you lost me on that part. Like I said, I do appreciate the feedback, and I am hoping that a Behike wizard can chime in regarding mainly the UV markings. Or maybe someone who also has a Oct-14 box.

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19 minutes ago, Stev067 said:

I appreciate the feedback. If it sounds like I'm crazy, that's just the culmination of me being very new to fine cigars (this was my 2nd box), and being a bit OCD. I do tend to go down rabbit holes and definitely did with this, exploring every possible thing to look for, and what people have said in past authenticity discussions. The one thing I will challenge you on though... I paid $800 for this box, which I assumed was not a bargain basement price as you put it, not to mention these aren't commonly available to buy. I don't see any for sale on FOH, and also hadn't heard that FOH was superior either (I like the forum though and I will probably place an order at some point). The vendor I bought from, is touted as being reputable, so you lost me on that part. Like I said, I do appreciate the feedback, and I am hoping that a Behike wizard can chime in regarding mainly the UV markings. Or maybe someone who also has a Oct-14 box.

I agree with you that in terms of authenticity, you 'after sale' are largely in the hands of the Cohiba nuts on this forum (of which there are many).  I'm sure they will steer you right. 

My comment is largely pointed towards 'pre-sale'  i.e there is a multitude of vendors out there, who will check, and select specific boxes for more than $800 a box. they will send you images, and give you a great deal of peace of mind, before you lay your money down 

$800 is a massive amount of cash......but not really in terms of Behike.    you may find cheaper prices, with less trustworthy vendors, and you will of course find higher prices with vendors who with offer you all sorts of one on one customer service and jump to your desires and enquiries. 

If this is your 2nd box, then undoubtedly you've jumped off the deep end, but there is nothing wrong with being passionate.   All i'm suggesting is you're doing your homework after the point of sale, and placing all sorts of expectations on the vendor.  When the more orthodox way of doing it, is doing all your home work (before hand) and then placing the order, in 100% confidence. 

The vendor you mentioned (and I wont discuss their name) I would classify as bargain basement supplier. A vendor who do not offer promises of a baseline of quality, a vendor you will not send pictures, a vendor who will not pick years or codes. etc etc etc.  there's nothing wrong with that whatsoever, but that's how they offer their prices. 

 

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It looks real enough from your pictures. I mean you know enough about cigars, given what you have written, with the checks and all that. All you are going to get here is just bias confirmation really.

Having said that, impeccable is one thing ,but the cigars and its packaging isn't going to be 100% perfect but it should be close enough. 

That said, just smoke the damn thing, you will know if its fake or not. Behike cigars are very distinctive in taste and flavor. all the best.     

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12 hours ago, wolfain said:

It looks real enough from your pictures. I mean you know enough about cigars, given what you have written, with the checks and all that. All you are going to get here is just bias confirmation really.

Having said that, impeccable is one thing ,but the cigars and its packaging isn't going to be 100% perfect but it should be close enough. 

That said, just smoke the damn thing, you will know if its fake or not. Behike cigars are very distinctive in taste and flavor. all the best.     

Thanks, yeah I will likely just smoke one in a few weeks once they've settled. They do smell a lot like my CoRos, so we'll see.

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Cool so you're saying you were able to look up that serial number and see which month/year it was used at Cohiba? Is that a tool that's available to everyone?

This is true for all brands, not only Cohiba. The numbers are in order. I use the BondRoberts archive and see that this year and month there were approximately the following numbers of warranty seals.
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6 hours ago, nKostyan said:


This is true for all brands, not only Cohiba. The numbers are in order. I use the BondRoberts archive and see that this year and month there were approximately the following numbers of warranty seals.

Great well this makes me feel a lot better. I think I might smoke one this weekend and see what happens. Thanks for your help!

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/15/2020 at 7:53 AM, SmokeHouse84 said:

Hi there, just reading through this topic have you ever came to the conclusion that they were legit after smoking one?

Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
 

Hey sorry about the delay, didn't see that you'd posted this reply. I've smoked 2 of them now. One last weekend, and the other mid-August. Overall, I'm coming to the conclusion that they're definitely real Cubans, and probably real Behike's, all things considered. I've never had another Behike, so I can't say with 100% confidence based on smoking one. In my eyes, the signs point to them being real. It was a sealed box, the box code checked out and matches the production date. The bands look fine, except that there is no UV reactive element to them. From what I've found online, earlier in that same year (2014) is when they started using UV marked blue squares on these bands. Either the information online is wrong, or mine got some old bands, or the UV marks faded away entirely in 6 years.

I wouldn't say they're my favorite, or that the cost is justified. The remaining 8 will probably last me a long time, and I'll save them for special occasions, and maybe the flavors will evolve over time.

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Hey sorry about the delay, didn't see that you'd posted this reply. I've smoked 2 of them now. One last weekend, and the other mid-August. Overall, I'm coming to the conclusion that they're definitely real Cubans, and probably real Behike's, all things considered. I've never had another Behike, so I can't say with 100% confidence based on smoking one. In my eyes, the signs point to them being real. It was a sealed box, the box code checked out and matches the production date. The bands look fine, except that there is no UV reactive element to them. From what I've found online, earlier in that same year (2014) is when they started using UV marked blue squares on these bands. Either the information online is wrong, or mine got some old bands, or the UV marks faded away entirely in 6 years.
I wouldn't say they're my favorite, or that the cost is justified. The remaining 8 will probably last me a long time, and I'll save them for special occasions, and maybe the flavors will evolve over time.
No worries thank you for the reply, that's exactly like the cab of Coro's I have, they will probably last me a really really long time. Sometimes I get Cubans that have flavors that didn't quite develop good. That would be interesting to know if those UV marks fade over time. I have never smoked a bhk but I heard they have that different taste to them, not sure if I'll ever buy one just because of a price tag on them lol. Good luck with aging them for the future I hope they turn out great for you.

Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

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On 9/23/2020 at 6:48 PM, Stev067 said:

Hey sorry about the delay, didn't see that you'd posted this reply. I've smoked 2 of them now. One last weekend, and the other mid-August. Overall, I'm coming to the conclusion that they're definitely real Cubans, and probably real Behike's, all things considered. I've never had another Behike, so I can't say with 100% confidence based on smoking one. In my eyes, the signs point to them being real. It was a sealed box, the box code checked out and matches the production date. The bands look fine, except that there is no UV reactive element to them. From what I've found online, earlier in that same year (2014) is when they started using UV marked blue squares on these bands. Either the information online is wrong, or mine got some old bands, or the UV marks faded away entirely in 6 years.

I wouldn't say they're my favorite, or that the cost is justified. The remaining 8 will probably last me a long time, and I'll save them for special occasions, and maybe the flavors will evolve over time.

try a Florescent blacklight, and not the LED-based ones.  The flashlight types are very bright, and can drown out what you're trying to observe sometimes.  The Florescent lights reveal the security marks but don't light the entire area bright enough to bleed into everything.

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