How Do You Push The Dowel Through?

Decorating By Kookie Updated 12 Jul 2009 , 8:41pm by lecrn

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 2:27am
post #1 of 47

Hello All,
I have read and known that people push the dowel through all tiers . How do you do that? Is it going through cardboards easily?
If so do you have to sharp it? like a pencil?
How about people using foam cores as the base?
I just can't get a picture!!
THANKS.

46 replies
cylstrial Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 2:35am
post #2 of 47

You are right! You sharpen the end of the dowel so that it looks like a pencil. Then you decide where the center is. It will slide easily thru the cake. Then you will get to the first piece of cardboard. You will have to push a little bit, but it will go thru pretty easy. Then you'll be going thru cake again and so forth.

Loucinda Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 2:40am
post #3 of 47

I use foam core and I have an electric pencil sharpener (dedicated)
Sharpen the dowel, insert it into the cake, and I use a small hammer to hammer it gently through all tiers into the 1/2" foamcore base.

Rylan Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 2:40am
post #4 of 47

Yes, you can also sharpen it using a serrated knife . Push it from the top and if it still hasn't reached the bottom, get another dowel and use that to push in the dowel that is already in there.

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 2:54am
post #5 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by cylstrial

You are right! You sharpen the end of the dowel so that it looks like a pencil. Then you decide where the center is. It will slide easily thru the cake. Then you will get to the first piece of cardboard. You will have to push a little bit, but it will go thru pretty easy. Then you'll be going thru cake again and so forth.




1.Do you use a hammer?
2.Have you ever bent the cardboards?

This is what I am thinking to to do.
6"cake-one cardboard
8" cake-two cardboards
10"cake-two cardboards
12"cake- on the silver base bottom board.not cardboards or do I need?

3. Does a dowel still strong enough to go through two cardboards?

THANKS.

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 2:59am
post #6 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loucinda

I use foam core and I have an electric pencil sharpener (dedicated)
Sharpen the dowel, insert it into the cake, and I use a small hammer to hammer it gently through all tiers into the 1/2" foamcore base.




Where do you find foamcore and what is this?
THANKS.

varika Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:09am
post #7 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Quote:
Originally Posted by cylstrial

You are right! You sharpen the end of the dowel so that it looks like a pencil. Then you decide where the center is. It will slide easily thru the cake. Then you will get to the first piece of cardboard. You will have to push a little bit, but it will go thru pretty easy. Then you'll be going thru cake again and so forth.



1.Do you use a hammer?
2.Have you ever bent the cardboards?

This is what I am thinking to to do.
6"cake-one cardboard
8" cake-two cardboards
10"cake-two cardboards
12"cake- on the silver base bottom board.not cardboards or do I need?

3. Does a dowel still strong enough to go through two cardboards?

THANKS.




I don't think you'll need two cardboards on the 8" cake. I never have. I have found that a good sharp twist when I reach the cardboard makes the dowel go through easier, much like a drill bit through wood, so I don't see why it wouldn't go through two cardboards, too.

Loucinda Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:10am
post #8 of 47

Here you go, this is what I would do:

12"- on a 1/2" foamcore - then set on the silver base (use a piece of shelf liner between them so it doesn't slide off) - dowelled w/ 8 -10 straws
10" - on 1/4" foamcore - dowelled w/ 6 - 8 straws
8" - on 1/4" foamcore - dowelled w/ 4 -6 straws
6" - on 1/4" foamcore

One center dowel sharpened and hammered through all 4 tiers (use a small piece of another dowel to use to hammer the last inch or so into the top tier)

The sharpened dowel will go through all layers just fine....and it will go into the 1/2" foamcore just fine.

You buy the foamcore at Michaels or Hobby Lobby. I am sure there are others who do it differently than I do, but this is what works for me, and I have never had a cake accident yet. (knock on wood)

dorie67 Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:15am
post #9 of 47

Is foam core and foam board the same thing? I just use the cake circles.

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:17am
post #10 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucinda

Here you go, this is what I would do:

12"- on a 1/2" foamcore - then set on the silver base (use a piece of shelf liner between them so it doesn't slide off) - dowelled w/ 8 -10 straws
10" - on 1/4" foamcore - dowelled w/ 6 - 8 straws
8" - on 1/4" foamcore - dowelled w/ 4 -6 straws
6" - on 1/4" foamcore

One center dowel sharpened and hammered through all 4 tiers (use a small piece of another dowel to use to hammer the last inch or so into the top tier)

The sharpened dowel will go through all layers just fine....and it will go into the 1/2" foamcore just fine.

You buy the foamcore at Michaels or Hobby Lobby. I am sure there are others who do it differently than I do, but this is what works for me, and I have never had a cake accident yet. (knock on wood)




Hi I don't know how people do that large dowl down the middle....I usually use a piece of foam core as the base for my "next" layer. I can't visualize how I could get one large dowl down 4 or 5 stacked cakes....anybody know???

Hi Lucinda,
Thank you for a quick answer!!
I learn lots of things on this site every day.

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:24am
post #11 of 47

Last question for all.
when you cut the foamcores or cardboards,
do you cut 1/4' bigger than actual cake size? so I can frost the cake?
exp:8" square cake- 8 1/4" square cardboard.
THANKS. icon_redface.gif

Loucinda Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:26am
post #12 of 47

One large dowel goes right down the center of ALL tiers, all cakes, right into the base. You use a hammer to gently tap it through the foamcore/foamboard. I don't know what you are not visualizing??

You measure that one long dowel from the bottom of the base to the top tier - and cut it accordingly - sharpen one end of it - that is the end that goes into the cakes/foamcore boards.

Loucinda Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:33am
post #13 of 47

I actually cut my foamcore the same size as my cake. I then set that board on another 1/2" board that is smaller - so I can get my icing smooth all the way down to the board. (I am sure that is confusing, I wish I could show you pixs of it)

lardbutt Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:37am
post #14 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Last question for all.
when you cut the foamcores or cardboards,
do you cut 1/4' bigger than actual cake size? so I can frost the cake?
exp:8" square cake- 8 1/4" square cardboard.
THANKS. icon_redface.gif




I leave at least 2" for my edges, unless it's a tiered cake. I don't want my board to show then, so I make it the same size of the cake. Before I stack it, I have it sitting on an extra board just so I can handle it better.

I never hammer the dowel through the boards. When it's sharpened you can kinda twist or screw it through the boards. When I get to the bottom, I do lightly tap it with whatever I can find handy. (lol)

BTW, I went to Hobby Lobby today and their 1/4 foam core board is on sale 50% off through Saturday! Which makes it only $1. ( I like HL's foam core better than Wal-mart's....I have no idea what the difference is, but it's more sturdy to me)

HTH!!!

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:41am
post #15 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loucinda

I actually cut my foamcore the same size as my cake. I then set that board on another 1/2" board that is smaller - so I can get my icing smooth all the way down to the board. (I am sure that is confusing, I wish I could show you pixs of it)




Yes I am confused now. icon_surprised.gif

cupcakesnbuttercream Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:49am
post #16 of 47

I have a question: do you dowel before or after putting fondant on the cake?

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:53am
post #17 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessyBaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Last question for all.
when you cut the foamcores or cardboards,
do you cut 1/4' bigger than actual cake size? so I can frost the cake?
exp:8" square cake- 8 1/4" square cardboard.
THANKS. icon_redface.gif



I leave at least 2" for my edges, unless it's a tiered cake. I don't want my board to show then, so I make it the same size of the cake. Before I stack it, I have it sitting on an extra board just so I can handle it better.

I never hammer the dowel through the boards. When it's sharpened you can kinda twist or screw it through the boards. When I get to the bottom, I do lightly tap it with whatever I can find handy. (lol)

BTW, I went to Hobby Lobby today and their 1/4 foam core board is on sale 50% off through Saturday! Which makes it only $1. ( I like HL's foam core better than Wal-mart's....I have no idea what the difference is, but it's more sturdy to me)

HTH!!!



Hi messybaker,( I am too)
so if you cut the board same size as a cake, when you frost the cake
buttercream doesn't sit on the cardboards.
It is off the cardboard. that means buttercream is hunging and dropping.
do you know what I mean?
thanks.

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:58am
post #18 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by cupcakesnbuttercream

I have a question: do you dowel before or after putting fondant on the cake?




after fondant.

lardbutt Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 4:06am
post #19 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Quote:
Originally Posted by MessyBaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Last question for all.
when you cut the foamcores or cardboards,
do you cut 1/4' bigger than actual cake size? so I can frost the cake?
exp:8" square cake- 8 1/4" square cardboard.
THANKS. icon_redface.gif



I leave at least 2" for my edges, unless it's a tiered cake. I don't want my board to show then, so I make it the same size of the cake. Before I stack it, I have it sitting on an extra board just so I can handle it better.

I never hammer the dowel through the boards. When it's sharpened you can kinda twist or screw it through the boards. When I get to the bottom, I do lightly tap it with whatever I can find handy. (lol)

BTW, I went to Hobby Lobby today and their 1/4 foam core board is on sale 50% off through Saturday! Which makes it only $1. ( I like HL's foam core better than Wal-mart's....I have no idea what the difference is, but it's more sturdy to me)

HTH!!!


Hi messybaker,( I am too)
so if you cut the board same size as a cake, when you frost the cake
buttercream doesn't sit on the cardboards.
It is off the cardboard. that means buttercream is hunging and dropping.
do you know what I mean?
thanks.



I am MESSYBAKER...buttercream is on EVERYTHING! lol Yeah, some will get on the bottom board, but you can clean it off. I use a bench scraper to smooth my icing so it's pretty clean when I'm finished smoothing. I don't know about others, but I have NEVER stacked tiers when I didn't have to "fix" the icing where I mess it up.

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 4:17am
post #20 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessyBaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Quote:
Originally Posted by MessyBaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Last question for all.
when you cut the foamcores or cardboards,
do you cut 1/4' bigger than actual cake size? so I can frost the cake?
exp:8" square cake- 8 1/4" square cardboard.
THANKS. icon_redface.gif



I leave at least 2" for my edges, unless it's a tiered cake. I don't want my board to show then, so I make it the same size of the cake. Before I stack it, I have it sitting on an extra board just so I can handle it better.

I never hammer the dowel through the boards. When it's sharpened you can kinda twist or screw it through the boards. When I get to the bottom, I do lightly tap it with whatever I can find handy. (lol)

BTW, I went to Hobby Lobby today and their 1/4 foam core board is on sale 50% off through Saturday! Which makes it only $1. ( I like HL's foam core better than Wal-mart's....I have no idea what the difference is, but it's more sturdy to me)

HTH!!!


Hi messybaker,( I am too)
so if you cut the board same size as a cake, when you frost the cake
buttercream doesn't sit on the cardboards.
It is off the cardboard. that means buttercream is hunging and dropping.
do you know what I mean?
thanks.


I am MESSYBAKER...buttercream is on EVERYTHING! lol Yeah, some will get on the bottom board, but you can clean it off. I use a bench scraper to smooth my icing so it's pretty clean when I'm finished smoothing. I don't know about others, but I have NEVER stacked tiers when I didn't have to "fix" the icing where I mess it up.




I am sorry but I don't get it.
If you cut the cardboard same size as baked cake, where the frosting sit on?
THANKS.
icon_cry.gif

lardbutt Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 4:59am
post #21 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Quote:
Originally Posted by MessyBaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Quote:
Originally Posted by MessyBaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kookie

Last question for all.
when you cut the foamcores or cardboards,
do you cut 1/4' bigger than actual cake size? so I can frost the cake?
exp:8" square cake- 8 1/4" square cardboard.
THANKS. icon_redface.gif



I leave at least 2" for my edges, unless it's a tiered cake. I don't want my board to show then, so I make it the same size of the cake. Before I stack it, I have it sitting on an extra board just so I can handle it better.

I never hammer the dowel through the boards. When it's sharpened you can kinda twist or screw it through the boards. When I get to the bottom, I do lightly tap it with whatever I can find handy. (lol)

BTW, I went to Hobby Lobby today and their 1/4 foam core board is on sale 50% off through Saturday! Which makes it only $1. ( I like HL's foam core better than Wal-mart's....I have no idea what the difference is, but it's more sturdy to me)

HTH!!!


Hi messybaker,( I am too)
so if you cut the board same size as a cake, when you frost the cake
buttercream doesn't sit on the cardboards.
It is off the cardboard. that means buttercream is hunging and dropping.
do you know what I mean?
thanks.


I am MESSYBAKER...buttercream is on EVERYTHING! lol Yeah, some will get on the bottom board, but you can clean it off. I use a bench scraper to smooth my icing so it's pretty clean when I'm finished smoothing. I don't know about others, but I have NEVER stacked tiers when I didn't have to "fix" the icing where I mess it up.



I am sorry but I don't get it.
If you cut the cardboard same size as baked cake, where the frosting sit on?
THANKS.
icon_cry.gif



LOL!!! Ok, the buttercream doesn't sit on anything...it sticks to the side of the cake icon_smile.gif
Somebody help me out and explain in a better way. I'm not good at it!

cylstrial Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 12:16pm
post #22 of 47

I think what she is trying to say, is that she frosts her cake to the edge of the cakeboard. So when she uses the spatula to smooth the buttercream, she is actually using the bottom of the baseboard to help guide her thru the icing process. You don't have to scrap any other boards down. You are just ready to put that cake onto the next cake.

I hope this makes sense.

P.S. I don't actually use a hammer and another dowel usually. I mean I have done it before. Since I'm just using one cake board, I don't worry about it. But if you are using two cake boards for the 10 inch, I would think that you would want to use the hammer and another 2inch dowel to help get it thru.

Loucinda Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 12:49pm
post #23 of 47

OK - lets see if we can make a visual of the cake board and icing......the board is the same size as the cake - it is setting on another board that is smaller (so you can get your fingers UNDER that cake board without messing up the icing)

Now, you are going to ice that cake all the way down to that board the cake is setting on. You are going to use your spatula or bench scraper to smooth the sides, you take it and hold it against the cake AND the cake board (since they are both the same size) and turn your turntable. Now your cake and the board it is setting on both have perfectly smooth icing on them, you cannot distinguish where that board even is, it is iced perfectly smooth with the cake.

Now, you have room to pick that cake up, since it is setting on top of another board that is SMALLER than the board it is setting on.

cylstrial Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 12:57pm
post #24 of 47

That was a really good way to explain Loucinda!

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 1:02pm
post #25 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loucinda

OK - lets see if we can make a visual of the cake board and icing......the board is the same size as the cake - it is setting on another board that is smaller (so you can get your fingers UNDER that cake board without messing up the icing)

Now, you are going to ice that cake all the way down to that board the cake is setting on. You are going to use your spatula or bench scraper to smooth the sides, you take it and hold it against the cake AND the cake board (since they are both the same size) and turn your turntable. Now your cake and the board it is setting on both have perfectly smooth icing on them, you cannot distinguish where that board even is, it is iced perfectly smooth with the cake.

Now, you have room to pick that cake up, since it is setting on top of another board that is SMALLER than the board it is setting on.




Good morning all and thank you for your explanation,Loucinda!
I got it !! SO you use two 1/2" foamcores as cake bases? If so that would be 1"boards. WOW that is very thick!Can you go through a dowel?

ddaigle Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 1:04pm
post #26 of 47

Edna has a youtube video. Maybe the visuals will help:


. Copy this link into your browser. HTH.

monkeny Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 1:06pm
post #27 of 47

I get the whole dowel thing but I have never done it--only single tier cakes. But all I can think of when everyone talks about pushing the dowel through cardboard/foamboard boards is all the little pieces of cardboard or foamboard going into the cake. Does this happen??

Kookie Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 1:08pm
post #28 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeny

I get the whole dowel thing but I have never done it--only single tier cakes. But all I can think of when everyone talks about pushing the dowel through cardboard/foamboard boards is all the little pieces of cardboard or foamboard going into the cake. Does this happen??




Good question and like to know too.

ZlatkaT Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 1:16pm
post #29 of 47

Now, you are going to ice that cake all the way down to that board the cake is setting on. You are going to use your spatula or bench scraper to smooth the sides, you take it and hold it against the cake AND the cake board (since they are both the same size) and turn your turntable. Now your cake and the board it is setting on both have perfectly smooth icing on them, you cannot distinguish where that board even is, it is iced perfectly smooth with the cake.

Now, you have room to pick that cake up, since it is setting on top of another board that is SMALLER than the board it is setting on.[/quote]

Is the smaller foam Bord going to the stacked cake as well or only the same cake size board? Is the smaller board just helping elevate the cake when icing to help pick up the cake easier?

Mencked Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 1:22pm
post #30 of 47

Instead of the dowels through all layers, and by the way, I've done it that way many times, I really, strongly suggest that you use the SPS system. Your cake will not a budge even a teeny, tiny bit with SPS and it's really relatively inexpensive. The peace of mind you get is immeasurable and you then need only one cardboard round under each cake tier because the plastic plates of the SPS system, which each cake tier sits on, is super strong and sturdy.

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