Do Straws Really Work For Dowels?

Decorating By chrissy410 Updated 22 Oct 2007 , 6:06pm by Solecito

chrissy410 Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 5:18am
post #1 of 26

I know I read this somewhere. Not sure if it was one of the books I have or on this website. It just doesn't seem possible because cake is so heavy! I can imagine it would be so much easier to use straws but I wonder how much weight they could actually support. I would hate to have a cake collapse on me.

25 replies
mezzaluna Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 5:23am
post #2 of 26

I use straws all the time. I have never had a cake collapse on me.

elizw Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 5:27am
post #3 of 26

i use straws too! especially for just a 2or3-tier cake. for larger wedding cakes, i use dowels. they are easier and quicker to use! i would still put a dowel through the whole cake though.

mezzaluna Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 5:32am
post #4 of 26

me too with the long dowel so they can't shift!

rajwant Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 8:56am
post #5 of 26

Feel silly asking this.... icon_redface.gif but am i correct when i push in 4 straws into the base cake and cut them off and leave a little bit above the cake?

Then i place my second cake over the base.

Do i need to put the second cake on a board before i place it over the base cake? or just put the second cake directly over the base cake without a board?

After this do i need to stick in a dowel at the centre of the second cake?

If so how do you actually get the dowel to go through the second cake's board? icon_cry.gif

Appreciate your replies....honourable chefs icon_smile.gificon_smile.gif

Charmaine49 Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 9:07am
post #6 of 26

rajwant, go to "Articles" on this website and there they show you how to do a stacked cake!!
And, yes, you need to put your second cake on a board before placing it on the bottom cake.

mezzaluna Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 9:16am
post #7 of 26

Nope... you don't the straws off level with the cake.... you cut ONE straw level and the cut the rest to that length. I'd use more than four.

rajwant Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 9:59am
post #8 of 26

Thank you for your advise honourable ones.....
I will check out the "articles" section

lovely Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 9:59am
post #9 of 26

When I was at school many many years ago we used to stab potaotoes with a straw. As long as you held your thumb over the end of the straw it was strong enough to go through the potatoe. If you didn't have your thumb over it the pressure inside the straw was then lessand then not as strong

Sorry for the rambling was just saying that straws should be strong enough to hold the weight of cakes. I use straws and they seem fine icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif

Granpam Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 10:08am
post #10 of 26

I too use straws and a center dowel. Never had a problem in three years.

armywife1 Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 10:39am
post #11 of 26

I use the bubble tea straws. They work well and are easier to cut than wooden dowels. I bought mine on amazon.com for a little less than $2.00 a bag (plus shipping).

Granpam Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 11:01am
post #12 of 26

If you have an Oriental grocery store check them out. I get a bag of 50 for 79 cents.

Sandi4tpc Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 1:34pm
post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by lovely

When I was at school many many years ago we used to stab potaotoes with a straw. As long as you held your thumb over the end of the straw it was strong enough to go through the potatoe. If you didn't have your thumb over it the pressure inside the straw was then lessand then not as strong

Sorry for the rambling was just saying that straws should be strong enough to hold the weight of cakes. I use straws and they seem fine icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif




I use straws too.

Now, I'm going to look for a potato to test that out! icon_twisted.gificon_lol.gif

armywife1 Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 1:39pm
post #14 of 26

Wow Granpam! That's WAY cheaper than amazon! I'll have to look in my phone book and see if there is an oriental store near by! Thanks for the tip! thumbs_up.gif

sugarMomma Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 1:45pm
post #15 of 26

I use straws too, and as lang as they are put in straight, they should be strong enough.
As far as pushing one long dowel through the entire cake, sharpen the end with a pencil sharpener or other means, and it should poke right through the board. I cover my board in contact paper and it still goes right through.

MichelleM77 Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 1:48pm
post #16 of 26

I was told by a cake decorator that they are just as strong as dowels. Dowels move cake out of the way but the straws actually fill up with cake and that makes them strong, is what she said.

CSMoore Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 2:01pm
post #17 of 26

I wasn't sure about using straws either. But this weekend, I had no choice. i had ordered some bubble tea straws on ebay and had been waiting to try them on some cakes for my family. Well this past weekend, I had to use them on a wedding cake since I forgot to pick up dowel rods. Let me tell you, I will never use dowels again. The straws were awesome, very strong and easy to cut. I had 3 tiers on a fountain. The attached photo is of the cake I used the straws on. So go ahead and try the bubble tea straws. Best of all, I got a bag of 50 for $3.99 and each straw is long enough to get 2 dowels out of each one.

Charisse
LL

CSMoore Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 2:01pm
post #18 of 26

I wasn't sure about using straws either. But this weekend, I had no choice. i had ordered some bubble tea straws on ebay and had been waiting to try them on some cakes for my family. Well this past weekend, I had to use them on a wedding cake since I forgot to pick up dowel rods. Let me tell you, I will never use dowels again. The straws were awesome, very strong and easy to cut. I had 3 tiers on a fountain. The attached photo is of the cake I used the straws on. So go ahead and try the bubble tea straws. Best of all, I got a bag of 50 for $3.99 and each straw is long enough to get 2 dowels out of each one.

Charisse
LL

jibbies Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 2:01pm
post #19 of 26

I've never used straws but I am not against them. I have read so many posts on here abut them being successful. This is one of those personal preference areas, I've used wooden dowels for 26 years others have used straws.
Find your comfort zone and go with it thumbs_up.gif

Jibbies

divaricks Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 2:08pm
post #20 of 26

If you do a lot of cakes and want a great deal for the bubble tea straws, nothing I have seen beats this! http://cgi.ebay.com/1-Case-Fat-Jumbo-Bubble-Boba-Pearl-Tea-Straws-Straw_W0QQitemZ4340912563QQcmdZViewItem

Check it out!

puzzlegut Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 3:32pm
post #21 of 26

Do you only need to do the one long dowel through all layers when you're transporting the cake all stacked, or would you do it regardless even if you stacked the cake at the location? Also, isn't it better to transport the cake unstacked and then stacking it at the location?

aswartzw Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 3:47pm
post #22 of 26

For transporting stacked, you need to use a center dowel to keep the cake from shifting. Some people do it this way all the time. It's really personal preference.

You don't really need a center dowel if setting up on site.

gramofgwen Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 3:57pm
post #23 of 26

I use the bubble tea straws, too, since they are 1/2" in diameter. I use a wooden dowel rod pushed through the center of all the tiers (makes the cake stable during transport), which I've sharpened with a little handheld pencil sharpener. icon_eek.gificon_smile.gif

jibbies Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 4:01pm
post #24 of 26

Any time I take a cake farther than my front porch I don't set it up until it gets to where its going. I do put it together on my dining room table as a trial run on Friday evening and I ususally leave it there until Saturday morning. This also helps with settleing issues, then I take it apart, transport and then put back together at the venue.

Jibbies

masarost Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 4:02pm
post #25 of 26

I was reluctant to try straws, but I grabbed a bunch from Burger King (the big fat black ones) and they worked fine on a really heavy cake I made. I found they were a lot easier to cut than the wooden ones and that made things go faster.

Solecito Posted 22 Oct 2007 , 6:06pm
post #26 of 26

CSMoore: your cake is lovely, I like it very much

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