Ok. This may be a stupid question. How do you stack buttercream cakes without leaving fingermarks on the bottom layer? Where do you place your fingers? and How do you get it centered the first time... you can't pick up the layer once you have set it down, can you? Thanks.
Pretend you have a 7" and 12" cake for stacking. You should use an empty 7" pan and trace a centered 7" circle onto the top of the 12" cake.
Then, pick up the well chilled 7" cake and hold the far edge with an offset spatula. You should be able to lower the 7" into place and slide the offset out when you are finished.
You can also hold the 7" underneath with your fingertips, center it above the 12" about an inch or so from the surface and quickly pull your fingers out. This might take practice.
Also, you should place parchment circles underneath each tier. So there should be a 7" parchment circle on top of the 12" cake before you place thenext size tier. This helps with adjusting the tiers after placement, and makes for cleaner "de-stacking".
Here's how I do it:
I use the spatula also to set the tier down. I leave the spatula under the cake until I make sure it's in the right place .... if it's not, I just lift it with the spatula and adjust it. When I sit it down, I just eyeball it since I don't use parchment under my tiers, but if you do use the parchment, it definitely would be a good guide for you.
I always do this from the back of the cake .... sometimes when sliding the spatula out, there's just the smallest bit of mess-up and if it can't be covered with the border that I'm about to add, then I want it to be in the back, unseen.
I use the "drop method". your dowels( I use bubble tea straws) stcik up out the cake an inch or two. i flash freeze the upper tier for 10-12 minutes, lift, place on the starws, and let the weight sink them down. Perfect bottom edges and no gauges in the BC at all.
Here's a good one also