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Any tips for stacking? Fingers/spatula in the way

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Hello! Whenever I stack my cakes, I have problems getting my fingers out from underneath the cake and always seriously mess up the icing (thank goodness for Viva!) Yesterday, I tried using a spatula and that seemed to be just as bad. Where should my hands be when I'm stacking a cake? I feel like I am missing something here and that there has got to be a better way. Any tips? TIA!
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Check out my cake blog at: http://adventuresofacakediva.com
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post #2 of 22
I use a cake lifter It helps me slide the cake into place & not mess up the bottom layer
Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding. Proverbs 17:28
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Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding. Proverbs 17:28
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post #3 of 22
Stacking buttercream is a circus act. Sharon Z's successful stacking DVD is great. It just requires practice like anything else. Good buttercream repairing techniques are also helpful.

No, you're not missing any 'secrets'. Good luck icon_rolleyes.gif
"Life is a river always flowing. Do not hold onto things. Work hard." Siddhārtha Gautama
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"Life is a river always flowing. Do not hold onto things. Work hard." Siddhārtha Gautama
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post #4 of 22
Agree with Platinumlady. I just got the 'cake lifter' and it works like a charm. The cake slides perfectly...you may still need to fix little areas but nothing major. Good luck!
"Life is short...eat cake!"
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"Life is short...eat cake!"
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post #5 of 22
Yes, the cake lifter. One of the best things that I have bought!
post #6 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakegirl1973

Where should my hands be when I'm stacking a cake?



One hand on the spatula and one hand underneath the cake (on its own cake circle) supporting the weight.

If you're using SPS, you can lower one side of the tier onto the plate, remove your hand, slide the tier into place across the plate with your spatula, lower the cake the rest of the way, and remove your spatula.

If you aren't using SPS, it helps with positioning if you're placing your tier onto another cake circle (just as you would with a single plate separator). So rather than trying to lower it on top of a buttercream surface (while denting the lower cake, trying to get your hand and spatula out without making a mess, and possibly disturbing the dowels), you're lowering it onto a corrugated cake circle instead that's already stuck in place on the surface of the lower tier. Doubling up on circles is easier than risking damage and causing internal support issues, and you'll still be able to hammer a center dowel through all tiers without a problem.
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by CWR41

If you aren't using SPS, it helps with positioning if you're placing your tier onto another cake circle (just as you would with a single plate separator). So rather than trying to lower it on top of a buttercream surface (while denting the lower cake, trying to get your hand and spatula out without making a mess, and possibly disturbing the dowels), you're lowering it onto a corrugated cake circle instead that's already stuck in place on the surface of the lower tier. Doubling up on circles is easier than risking damage and causing internal support issues, and you'll still be able to hammer a center dowel through all tiers without a problem.



icon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gif

I think I just had my DUH! moment of the week.

What a great freakin idea. So simple, yet sounds like JUST the answer for me - I use SMBC and stacking is a PIMA, and fixing big 'ole finger dents is not easy!!!

Thank you!!!
post #8 of 22
When you say doubling up the board,,,do you mean put the board on layer then another board under the cake, then when you stack,,you place the cake on the board that is already on the layer?? Hope you know what I mean..thanks!
post #9 of 22
The absolute best way is to chill your iced cakes and then stack when they are cold and firm. Use a flat spatula and your hands to position it....then slide the spatula out from under the tier when its in place. You can use the end of the spatula to nudge the cake here and there to center it. If your cake is nice and cold, and your supports put in correctly, you should be able to stack, and even adjust the centering, without messing up the icing.

Cold fondant cakes are even easier to stack...if you work quickly, you can even just nudge it around by hand until its centered correctly.
post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenscreativity

When you say doubling up the board,,,do you mean put the board on layer then another board under the cake, then when you stack,,you place the cake on the board that is already on the layer?? Hope you know what I mean..thanks!



I guess. (I wouldn't describe it as a layer... it's the top surface of the tier that you're stacking upon.)

You do the same as if using a separator plate except it's corrugated cardboard... just smear some BC on it first. (it doesn't need to be the same size circle either, it can be smaller.)

If you just drop it or let it lower itself on dowels that aren't pushed all the way into the cake and then discover that it isn't correctly centered, you'll risk pushing the dowels over when sliding the cake over into its correct position.
post #11 of 22
I've always had this same question when stacking. The two-circle idea is great!
Marianna
"I know my own mind...and it's around here somewhere!"
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Marianna
"I know my own mind...and it's around here somewhere!"
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post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by FromScratchSF

Quote:
Originally Posted by CWR41

If you aren't using SPS, it helps with positioning if you're placing your tier onto another cake circle (just as you would with a single plate separator). So rather than trying to lower it on top of a buttercream surface (while denting the lower cake, trying to get your hand and spatula out without making a mess, and possibly disturbing the dowels), you're lowering it onto a corrugated cake circle instead that's already stuck in place on the surface of the lower tier. Doubling up on circles is easier than risking damage and causing internal support issues, and you'll still be able to hammer a center dowel through all tiers without a problem.



icon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gif

I think I just had my DUH! moment of the week.

What a great freakin idea. So simple, yet sounds like JUST the answer for me - I use SMBC and stacking is a PIMA, and fixing big 'ole finger dents is not easy!!!

Thank you!!!




WHAT!!! OMG! Cannot beleive I haven't heard of this idea! icon_eek.gif Wow, thanks for sharing. I thought I knew all the 'secrets' but I guess not!
"Life is a river always flowing. Do not hold onto things. Work hard." Siddhārtha Gautama
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"Life is a river always flowing. Do not hold onto things. Work hard." Siddhārtha Gautama
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post #13 of 22
I couldn't live without my cake lifter, and use it for disassembling layer cakes when serving, as well icon_smile.gif
We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. Winston Churchill
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We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. Winston Churchill
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post #14 of 22
post #15 of 22
This method can be done with bubble tea straws or dowels. Keep in mind dowels will sink quicker.

Once you have put either in place and cut to fit - so to speak - dont push them all the way back down into the cake. Leave about half protruding above the surface. Center your cake as best you can and let the cake slide down and push your supports back into place.
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