I too love this recipe -- I've decreased the liquid slightly, and use a flower nail on mid-sized pans. Also, decrease the oven temp slightly as well.
On the large tiers for a wedding cake, I add up how much batter I'd need for two 2" layers (like say a pan needs 6 cups and 6 cups). Then I bake 3 smaller layers instead (so, in this case, I'd put 4 cups batter in a pan, and bake 3 layers). I find I don't even need to level them. Just fill and go.
I know this doesn't solve your problem entirely, but that's how I work with this yummy cake.
Perhaps someone else has a better solution...!