I don't usually use a center dowel in my cakes because I use Stress Free cake supports. I have a huge cake in two weeks for a friend and I don't want to use my Stress free system because I don't want to worry about having to get it back. Wilton's instructions don't show a dowel i the middle just a circle of dowels and then one long dowel through all three cakes. On Tonednas video she has a circle of dowels one in the middle and then the long dowel. How do you use a center dowel without trying to hammer it into a dowel that has already been placed?
HAve you considered SPS? It works great and is disposable.
If you are transporting the doweled cake assembled, you should not insert a cut dowel in the center of any of the cakes. Instead, hammer through the center one long dowel. Tonedna's video with the cut dowel in the center is for if you are stacking on site, because you would not use a center dowel. HTH!
Not sure if this is the correct way but it works great for me since I don't like hammering my dowel. I ice my cakes each on there own foamcore board that I have cut a whole in the center of each board except the bottom layer. Once I have my bottom layer on my display board I then insert a sharpened dowel into the center of this layer (this dowels length depends on how many tiers you are stacking, make sure it is 2" shorter than total). Once the cakes are iced I mark the center and use a bubble tea straw to remove excess cake from the center of each cake where the dowel will be inserted threw . I insert these layers threw the dowel and slide them down to the bottom tiers till u get to the top tier which slids over the last piece of dowel .Of course I also use my dowels/straws inside of each layer for the needed support. I have never tried the sps system but saw it being used on a cake show by White Flower Cake shop and it looks like a great idea and nothing to return even better. Good Luck