Cake Failure Even With Sps???? Anyone Else Have Failure Even With Sps?

Decorating By Valscake Updated 7 Aug 2014 , 2:30pm by Dcr Cakes

Valscake Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 3:41am
post #1 of 40

Hey fellow cakers.  So, I thought the cake gods had blessed me with no more cake disasters (last one was over 8 years ago).  I had a two tiered cake today.  Bottom layer was 10 inches and was white cake filled with raspberry preserves, Top cake was 6 inches and chocolate filled with Peanut butter cream cheese. 

 

The cake was well chilled and had the SPS system in the cake. I've used it many times with no issues.

The cake had been out of the walk in fridge long enough to put some fondant cut-out flowers on the cake and some pixie dust and then back into the fridge it went. The box was 12 inches on the bottom, so it was a perfect fit for the 12 inch drum.  I put double sided sticky tape on the bottom of the box and put the stacked tiered cake in it.  It wasn't going anywhere.  I taped (loosely) the box up and loaded it into the customer's car myself.

 

The gentleman drove a BMW.   I told him that the cake was safest on the floorboard of the car.  He said he didn't have room there,  So, I had him put the seat at a 90 degree angle and then put the box in and wedged the box between the dash and the chair back.

 

Low and behold I get a call about 40 minutes later saying that the cake had fallen apart.  What happened here??? 

 

When the customer brought it back to the bakery, the cake looked like the bottom layer just came apart. It looked like the cake had been "jiggled" apart. The funny thing is that the SPS system was still standing tall and looking good.  The cake was ice cold to the touch and the cake firm still.   BUT, the top layer looked like it had hit the back of the box (oil on the box and a bash on the top layer). 

 

Any advice from anyone who's used SPS.  I've done this cake and combo dozens of time with no problems. Anyone???

39 replies
AZCouture Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 5:37am
post #2 of 40

AWell, it's not foolproof! Even SPS won't prevent a cake from bouncing and jiggling apart in a car ride from hell.

morganchampagne Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 5:42am
post #3 of 40

AI can see that top tier sliding off with reckless driving easily.

leah_s Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 8:26am
post #4 of 40

AThere was some bad driving and a slam of brakes evidenced by the cake hitting the side of the box.

Dayti Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 1:56pm
post #5 of 40

It sounds like the 6" tier popped off the top, hit the box, and went back into almost its original position again (not really much room in the 12" box for it to go anywhere else)

Sharp braking, dodgy driving, bad roads could cause a crack in the lower tier and it separated from the pillars inside. I had a crack once in a tiered buttercream cake having driven up a ridiculously bumpy road to a wedding venue. But it was only aesthetic and could be patched up on arrival, it did not wreck the integrity of the cake.

 

Not much you could have done differently I think. I actually glue the tiers to the plastic plate below with double sided sticky tape or RI, but really in a sharp stop, I reckon it might pop off anyway. A large bump or pothole in the road...cake only has to "jump" 1/4" and it's off that little peg in the middle of the plate...

-K8memphis Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 1:59pm
post #6 of 40

pilot error

Valscake Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 2:13pm
post #7 of 40

Well, I am considering requiring delivery on any and ALL stacked cakes.  I suppose the customer will just have to pay for delivery in the future.  The lady who ordered the cake called so angry, insisting a refund on the cake, insisting that the cake was like that when it got to her.  She says she is going to post pic's all over Facebook of the cake and make sure "all our customer's know it's our cake".  She then cursed me and hung up.  I gave her 30 "jumbo" sized cupcakes beautifully decorated, and apologized profusely.  I feel I was more than generous. She did have cake for her event.

The funny thing is the husband brought the cake back and he was sort of sheepish and wouldn't make eye contact (kinda like my dog when she tore up my comforter).  He was really nice and said thank you etc.  

 

As a result of this, I guess I have to incorporate ONE MORE PAGE OF CONTRACTS, just more "legalese".  I know it's been discussed here at length, but I feel like the paperwork for cakes is getting ridiculous.  Any one have a sort of "condensed" version of a contract?  This is what I hate about cakes!!

morganchampagne Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 7:07pm
post #8 of 40

AI require delivery on all tiered cakes. I just won't let anybody drive with them, because non cake people don't respect cake! None of my clients will ever leave my place with one!

Cevamal Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 8:34pm
post #9 of 40

AInstead of requiring delivery could you recommend delivery and have the customer sign off on the cake at pickup? Explain that delivery is recommended because you will not be responsible for the cake after they sign off.

-K8memphis Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 9:08pm
post #10 of 40

i let them pick it up but i try to do all the thinking for them --it's cold, it's boxed, it's secure as possible -- i pony up a roll of paper towels to level out the seat if they forgot theirs and i can't find any books, coke cans or jackets in their car to level it out--

 

and i tell them to drive like there's an egg rolling around on their dashboard  -- zero g force -- i remind them how much the cake costs and to be careful -- no stops anywhere either --

 

i discuss the paper towels and no stopping when they decide to do a pick up then the egg thing right before they drive off --

Valscake Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 10:23pm
post #11 of 40

Quote:

Originally Posted by -K8memphis 
 

i let them pick it up but i try to do all the thinking for them --it's cold, it's boxed, it's secure as possible -- i pony up a roll of paper towels to level out the seat if they forgot theirs and i can't find any books, coke cans or jackets in their car to level it out--

 

and i tell them to drive like there's an egg rolling around on their dashboard  -- zero g force -- i remind them how much the cake costs and to be careful -- no stops anywhere either --

 

i discuss the paper towels and no stopping when they decide to do a pick up then the egg thing right before they drive off --

I get that...I thought, "well,most people are reasonable". The cake was cold,boxed, taped to the bottom of the box,carried and loaded by me....what other precautions can I take. 

-K8memphis Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 10:44pm
post #12 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Valscake 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by -K8memphis 
 

i let them pick it up but i try to do all the thinking for them --it's cold, it's boxed, it's secure as possible -- i pony up a roll of paper towels to level out the seat if they forgot theirs and i can't find any books, coke cans or jackets in their car to level it out--

 

and i tell them to drive like there's an egg rolling around on their dashboard  -- zero g force -- i remind them how much the cake costs and to be careful -- no stops anywhere either --

 

i discuss the paper towels and no stopping when they decide to do a pick up then the egg thing right before they drive off --

I get that...I thought, "well,most people are reasonable". The cake was cold,boxed, taped to the bottom of the box,carried and loaded by me....what other precautions can I take.

 

 

i wasn't trying to imply that you did anything wrong --and i apologize if you took it that way -- i'm just saying how i do it -- if any of that might be helpful --

 

with all that said though since you asked next time you can tell them to be super careful driving and don't do any other errands on the way --

 

we had this one guy --i've told this story before so  just stop here if you've heard it already ;)  but  we did a 2-d frog cake if memory serves -- was in a closed half sheet box and the guy quickly tucked it under his arm like a football sideways when he went to grab the handle on the door -- we're all freaking out -- going 'hey wait a minute' but he was out and gone and interestingly enough we never heard a word back about it - it had to be scrambled frog though -- :-D

 

i'm very sorry that happened to you -- if someone is gonna drive like jehu there's nothing you can do about it -- and that lady was a witch to treat you like that -- shoulda never happened -- mean peiople suck and you were great to provide the cupcakes --

 

best of the best to you

Valscake Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 10:49pm
post #13 of 40

K8Memphis.....of course not....no apology necessary....didn't mean to be harsh...sorry....I guess I'm just wondering if maybe I did something wrong with the cake....Maybe I'll see if my son can help me upload the pic so you can see the before and after!!

Dayti Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 10:55pm
post #14 of 40

Quote:

Originally Posted by Valscake 
 

..."well,most people are reasonable"....what other precautions can I take. 

That's the thing, most people are reasonable. It's the 10% that aren't that are the problem. 

 

Other precautions...make sure they absolutely are aware that your responsibility for the cake ends when you wave them goodbye with their cake properly set in their car. If you have to have them sign something, do it.

 

If you prefer to deliver cakes yourself, enforce your decision when they order and make them pay for it- or offer it free, if you would just prefer to make sure you get the order (since forking out $25 delivery on a €350 cake is too much for some :roll:) and take an extra hour or whatever to do it yourself, knowing that you will not have to refund any money ever because the cake was delivered fine by you.

-K8memphis Posted 27 Jul 2014 , 11:54pm
post #15 of 40

Quote:

Originally Posted by Valscake 
 

K8Memphis.....of course not....no apology necessary....didn't mean to be harsh...sorry....I guess I'm just wondering if maybe I did something wrong with the cake....Maybe I'll see if my son can help me upload the pic so you can see the before and after!!

 

 no no no no no no i wanted to be sure that you knew i was not taking your temperature, or setting your standard for you or anything like that that i am on your side -- i think a poster who discloses a difficulty like this makes themself vulnerable and i wanted to assure you i'm on your side -- you weren't harsh -- and from what you said , not at all do i think you did anything wrong --

 

it's really upsetting when someone uses you like that -- and not an iota would i add to that -- just the opposite was my aim --

 

can't wait for pictures

Valscake Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 12:10am
post #16 of 40

OK peeps..see my pain... Any ideas....

 

?ui=2&ik=ef8ae3c26e&view=att&th=1477a4c711dbfd15&attid=0.1&disp=emb&zw&atsh=1

Valscake Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 12:16am
post #17 of 40

See the before.....It was pretty....;(

?ui=2&ik=ef8ae3c26e&view=att&th=1477a527e816e0e4&attid=0.1&disp=emb&zw&atsh=1

-K8memphis Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 12:44am
post #18 of 40

i see the links but i can't see the pictures

-K8memphis Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 12:42pm
post #21 of 40

the pictures aren't coming through yet

JanDunlevy Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 2:34pm
post #22 of 40

AI can't see them either.

AZCouture Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 3:05pm
post #23 of 40

A

Ok, you can't link to your mail, you need to physically SAVE the photos and upload them. There is a box to click that looks like a picture, click that, and upload the photo.

Valscake Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 3:14pm
post #24 of 40

 

Valscake Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 3:17pm
post #25 of 40

Thanks AZ Couture..I'm not so great with technology....I saved them to my computer and then uploaded...Hopefully you all can see the pics now.  I talked to one of the cake artists I work with (male, he's done cakes for 19 years), he says it really looks like it was dropped.  I do see now that I forgot to put frosting to secure the second tier to the cake board....But it seems that would have very little to do with the entire bottom layer falling apart....Thoughts?

AZCouture Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 3:24pm
post #26 of 40

Who knows, you weren't there to see what happened. That is wrecked beyond belief, so I would guess that yeah, it got dropped. Maybe more than once. Maybe something intentional was done to it, for payback for being to sent to pick up the "stupid cake" up by the wifey (just imagining a reluctant husband being sent on an errand he didn't want to). You never know. I don't put frosting anywhere to secure it to anything, but I don't let people pick them up in the first place. If they must, because they're driving out of town, they glued down with gooey fondant/royal icing, and staked thru to the cake drum with a skewer.

-K8memphis Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 3:24pm
post #27 of 40

APilot error geez oh pete

AZCouture Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 3:28pm
post #28 of 40

And you can see the SPS standing tall and proud, wondering what the heck happened all around it. So it did it's job as best as it could, but it can't do a thing for a situation like that. :( Don't fret another second...this is not your fault. Just maybe emphasize next time the care that needs to be taken, and possibly refuse to allow the cake to leave in a setup like that (small cramped car). Stand your ground, Say I don't want a phone call in a half hour from now because it's wrecked, because I won't be able to do ANYTHING to help you. 

cakesbycathy Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 4:18pm
post #29 of 40

I now require on all tiered cakes after a cake disaster that was definitely "pilot error."

 

I explain that tiered cakes are especially fragile and we want to make sure the cake arrives in one piece and since I have experience delivering the cakes it is something they don't have to worry about, etc.   I do try to be accommodating for their schedule as much as possible without making myself nuts.  If they don't want to pay for it I decline the order.

Dayti Posted 28 Jul 2014 , 6:14pm
post #30 of 40

OMG I can't believe the state that cake is in! I agree that it looks like the cake was dropped. There is NO WAY a cake would break 360º just from going over bumps or leaning slightly in the box. I mean, it's broken all the way around! Makes me want to make one and drive like crazy around town and over speed bumps and out onto the countryside goat tracks with potholes, just to see what happens to it. I am pretty sure it wouldn't end up like this though. I really don't think it's your fault.

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