@FlyWheel I see that you deleted your post. Not sure why you'd do that, you absolutely have every right to ask the question and to have your ideas considered. No one here is trying to be argumentative - just helpful in explaining why many of us don't do the heating pad on the floor. We all have chicks that prefer, after a certain time, to spend more time on top of the heating pad rather than under it, and we expect that. It's the natural progression of things....under a broody hen they'd be doing the same thing - laying alongside her or on top of her rather than under her because 1) they are feathered enough not to need as much heat anymore and 2) they won't all fit anyway. So really, your chicks aren't doing anything that ours don't do as well.
I know, it's a heating pad, not a broody hen. But a heat lamp is just a heat lamp, too. What we are trying to do with MHP is to replicate as closely as we can the behavior of chicks with a real mom. And at this point the chicks would naturally not be under her as much. They simply don't need as much heat. Putting the pad underneath and then a towel on top is just putting back in what they have clearly shown they don't want - a lot of heat. As I see it, with the pad on top, they can just hop up for a few seconds, or even take a nap if they want to. That's what they're doing with your heating pad on the floor, except when you cover it to hold in the heat. At that point being on top of the cave gives them no heat, and being in it gives them too much. So they are more likely to find a corner, pile into it, and go without. And you know, if your temps aren't bad, that's okay too! But they are young enough yet that if they get spooked, they still have the security of running underneath, even if the pad is just set on low or 1.
If you just don't think this is the way you want to go and prefer your setup, that's certainly the right thing for you to do. There is no "one way" to raise chicks. But most of us who have done this for awhile have figured out how to most closely give the chicks as natural a start as possible without a broody hen. I hope that answered your question better than we've been able to do so far. Some have been doing it with the heat on the floor for sometime, so it's nothing new. @MyMilleFleur has long been brooding chicks with the heating pad on the floor rather than using a frame.