Plastic Support Plate Sizing? Im Confused...

Decorating By Jeannie21 Updated 13 Jan 2009 , 5:24pm by Jeannie21

Jeannie21 Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 4:55am
post #1 of 7

I need to support my first stacked cake and im sooo confused. I know about the SPS system but can I only buy it online? If so, it wont work because i need it in just a few days. So heres the deal. I'll be making a baby shower cake and it will be 10" on the bottom and 6" on top and thats it. I thought I could get the plastic support plates in my local craft store and have my 10" cake sitting on the 10" plate and the 6" sitting on the 6" plate, but when I went to go buy them it said on the label that the 10" plate was for UP TO 8" cakes and the 6" was for cakes UP TO 3"!!! So can i not use those sizes? Does there HAVE to be a border of the plate sticking out? Im sorry but i dot understand. And If i do use those plates would I need additional support and if so, what? and how? Again, I apologize, but this cake is soo very important and I would like to get this right. Also I have to drive 20 minutes to the party and I would like to do it already stacked.
TIA!!!!

6 replies
dmich Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 5:20am
post #2 of 7

Hi Jeannie - don't worry, this will work out. I know that first stacked cake is a nerve-wracking thing. I am far from an expert on this topic, so maybe others will jump in with their opinions. This is what I do: Each cake is placed on a cardboard cake board that is the same size or slightly smaller than the cake. I put dowels (I happen to use the wooden ones) in the bottom cake. For a 10-inch, I would use 6 dowels - should be flush with the top of the tier. Don't place one in the center, because you'll need that space for the dowel driven through the entire cake (I'll come back to that). Once your dowels are in, place a circle of parchment paper on top of the bottom cake to avoid fondant being torn off when the top tier is removed for serving. Place the top layer on the parchment circle. Considering that you will be driving for 20 minutes with your cake stacked, I suggest using a dowel through the entire cake. Sharpen one dowel with a pencil sharpener, cut it so that it is slightly shorter than the stacked cake. Drive the dowel all the way through both tiers (it will go through the cake board for the top tier) and into your bottom cake board. Use a little hammer to help you with this. Patch up the hole on top with fondant or cover it with a topper. Hope this helps.

milissasmom Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 5:41am
post #3 of 7

I use SPS so I have never been to a craft store to buy a support system but this sounds VERY confusing to me. The plates should NOT be 2 or 3 inches larger than the cake you are resting on top of it. It sounds like maybe they were in the wrong bin or on the wrong shelf. Did you ask anyone in the store to clarify that the posted information was correct?? This sounds weird. I am sorry this happened to you. Dont get freaked out...just get clarity from the store and get it done. Don't let this stress you out...the cake sounds too important! Good luck...

j-pal Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 4:03pm
post #4 of 7

Hey Jeannie - more than likely, the plates are labeled that way for a separated construction. If you're using plates and pillars with a separation, than normally you would want the plate larger than the cake sitting on it.

In your case you want to stack them, so they'll work just fine. Is your cake fondant or buttercream? Are you going to have a bottom border around the base of each tier? What kind? The reason I ask is that if you're doing a fondant cake with a simple border, the cake plate might show a little. If that's the case, you could get away with just using cardboard under the 6". That way your borders would completely hide it. If it's buttercream with a piped border, then the cake plate is fine.

Generally with stacked construction, I'll use drinking straws for my support. It's quick, simple, cost effective and will completely support the weight of a 6" tier. I usually cut 8 supports even with the height of the cake and place them in the 10" tier. The cake plate legs will go down into the 10" cake and will keep the top layer from sliding during transport. Make sure the 6" is attached to the plate well. Using the plates will eliminate the need for the center dowel through the middle and will still give you the support and security needed. Good luck!!

Jeannie21 Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 5:10pm
post #5 of 7

THank you soooo much everyone!!! Ok I feel so much better now, And I cant wait to try each system. Once again THANK YOU icon_smile.gif

kakeladi Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 5:12pm
post #6 of 7

What dmich said is closest to what you want to do.
You do NOT need plastic plates unless you really want them.
You might want one for the largest tier but it's not necessary.
Use cardboard cake circles. The largest size should be *at least* 2" larger than the cake - in your case use 12" boards but......glue 3 of them together and cover them w/a nice foil or other paper. Have the cake on one 10" cake circle (this one does not need to be covered) which you glue to the covered board.
In that you are using only a 6" tier on top, you only need to use plastic drink straws for support. Insert one into your 10" cake & mark where it comes flush w/the cake (which you have made *sure* is level); remove & cut all the rest (I only use 4, but 6 would ease your mind better) the same size. Be sure you get them cut level/straight. When inserting the straws into the cake again be very sure you get them in straight. You only have one chance....you cannot pull them out & try again (unless you put them into another part of the cake - not in the same hole.
When you transport it make sure you put it where it is level! The floor or trunk is best. A seat is NOT level. If you pipe a boarder - especially a b'cream one it will help hold the two tiers of cake together.

Jeannie21 Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 5:24pm
post #7 of 7

Thanks Kakeladi! I love CC'ers! icon_biggrin.gif Your all so helpful and sweet!

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