Bubble t-straws are a fat (1/2) straw. Some people use the fat straws from Burger king, I get my either on e-bay or at the Asian food store. (they are for the bubble tea at avian restaurants) I don't like dowels, they displace the cake, the more you use the more you displace. The cake pushes out and that is how my cake collapsed. Now some people love dowels, it's all what works for you.