What is the cause of this? On my clocks I had no problem and then last night I went to outline a onsie and write "baby" in the middle and they turned our HORRIBLE! I could hardly even make a straight line, it was beyond frustrating.
I cleaned the tip off with a wet cloth every few seconds and I thought I had pretty steady pressure when I was piping. I used Antonias RI and it was perfect, I just don't know what happened. Oh, and they were Wilton tips.
Good thing they were for practice, I wouldn't have been able to sell them.
I use a little clear piping gel in my royal to help it flow through the smaller tips easier.
IMHO, the icing is too thick. This happens to me whenever I use that tiny little tip and I have to load a seperate bag slightly thinner, almost to the point where is falls out. Then it works fine.
Believe me, I'm no expert at all but when I took a speciality class on piping our instructor had given us in our pre-paid kit, top of the line #1 and #2 tips. She said that brands such as Wilton can have tiny defects and are welded together like when you make a paper cone. These tips (and sorry i don't remember the name but think they were made outside the U.S.) were extruded in one piece so there was seam and consequently microscopily almost perfect. Okay, whatever--but what I do know is that unlike the Wilton tips I had that would do the squiggly dance I never had a problem with these tips. She also recommended using very fine 10X sugar to make the piping icing. Now if I could only hold my hands still when I do fine piping work...
Oh, the old ri is coming out squiggly from the #1 tip. We have discussed this before. I think Tracylh started a post on this a while back. Anyway, I think jkeeler is right about the seam being the problem. I think Tracy researched this is found the answer to be the same. Tracy, are you out there???
But of course! Nice to see you Peeverly! Been thinking of you!
Not enough time to find the original posting, but the PME tips are the ones that do not have a seam and are recommended for fine stringwork and preventing the dreaded squiggle. Someone (yankeegal? kneadacookie? KiminCajunCountry? I don't remember who) - found that info on the PME website and I was told the same elsewhere.
I use the PME's a lot for detailing and for lettering. One BIG trick with small tips is to use a method to prevent them from clogging. Try not to laugh, but this has saved me from pulling my hair out more than once! You take a new knee high stocking, wash it in dish soap, rinsing very thoroughly and dry it. Put this over a tall glass, pulling the excess over the top so you can easily access the bottom of the stocking. Pour your RI in, twist the top, then put a piece of plastic wrap around that area to protect your hand from any icing as you squeeze the RI through. The stocking catches those little bits that would clog your small tips and makes life SO much easier!
All that aside, CakeDiva73 is right on the mark! Icing that is too thick can cause this. Also, too much pressure can as well. I even had it happen last night with a #2 tip when it got partially clogged and the icing couldn't flow properly. (That's what I get for mixing my icing too quickly!)
Usually I don't have a problem with a #1 Wilton, but you might have gotten a 'bad' one. I would try another #1 Wilton, less stiff consistency, pull back on the pressure and even try the stocking idea if you really want to cover all bases. I have never found the need to use the #1 PME and just use Wilton, but really, really recomment the PME 0 and 00 if you like fine detail work. They are not cheap, but are well worth it. Oh, when cleaning them, never, ever put a toothpick down in them as you can cause a scratch that can cause issues when piping. I think Indydebi mentioned that somewhere.
Hope that helps!
Thank you so much for the advice! And I'm sorry if this is a topic that is frequently asked about.
The thing is, is that I know my icing wasn't too thick as when I wrote some letters out it puddled a bit and spread. Not terrible or anything, but enough to not have a really clean thin line for writing or outlining. Must have been a bad tip maybe. Or chunky icing.
Nope! Not to worry! It is not talked about often and it has been some time since it was posted. Never hesitate to ask a question! That is what we are all here for!
Sorry to hear that it is giving you trouble and I hope it stops being persnickity soon!
this happens to me all the time.
mostly because I'm too lazy to be so cautious with my licing, like Tracy suggests.
it can be the tinyest little clump that will get in the tip and make the icing spiral.
my fix is to a) change to a fresh tip or b) clean the tip in hot water (either remove it or just dip it in a small bowl of hot water.
it's so annoying.
I may have to invest in some knee-highs!
edited to add: I forgot, sometimes I stick a pin in the end and swoop it around - this works for a little while.
It happens to me too. I know it not the tip cause it worked fine before. I do what Jenwhitlock does change to another tip and put the one that did not work in hot water. Then when I clean it I use a little bruch. It just take the tiniest bit of icing to harden up and cause this to happen. I use the couplers so it is really easy to change the tip and not the bag.
Here is something if you haven't heard about this one. To prevent it your icing from hardening on the tip, while not using it store it tip down in a tall glass with a very lightly damp paper towel in the bottom. This will prevent a crust from forming. As for those dreaded clogs inside, I go with Jen's suggestion a lot. Just be careful not to scratch the inside of the tip as apparently that can cause problems. I try to keep an extra tip around to switch out as some clogs are just so determined, but honestly, most times I can't find it or it is on another bag, so I have to wash it and clean it with a little brush (you can find those at Michael's in the Wilton section.)
I bought the PME tips after reading the old post, and loooove them... then last week I read at GSA that they have "Calligraphy Tips" made by PME, too... has anyone tried them?