# Question for cube solvers.

I have a few 3x3 cubes and I have books and notes on how to solve them. The steps always seem to be essentially the same:

Solve the bottom layer edges
Solve the bottom layer corners.
Solve the middle layer edges
Solve the top layer edges
Shift the top layer corners into position.
Rotate the top layer corners to solve.

But when I see the times you folks are doing I have to think that you’re doing something much more complex than what I just described. I can’t understand how you can go through the steps I described in 30 to 40 seconds. What kinds of advanced techniques are you using and where (You tube perhaps?) would I learn these techniques? When I search Youtube I always seem to find the same steps I described above. There must be some cool, advanced techniques that I don’t know about.

Or are you folks just really that fast? :o

I just find the topic fascinating.

They practice. A lot. I meant a TON. Also, the steps you have there, most cubers use a method called CFOP. (Cross, First two layers [F2L], Orient last layer, P-something last layer) And it combines steps 2 and 3 that you listed, and it shaves a lot of time off once you get smooth with it.

yeah, like fuzzwad said, cfop or f2l googled would get you some good results.

While it is possible to get sub 20 you described, it is much easier to do so with cfop or roux. However using one of these methods will not automatically make you faster. It requires a ton of practice to get fast.

Well that makes sense. And sure enough doing a google search for “cfop cube solving” lead me to the speedsolving wiki.

Wow, that’s a lot of memorization and muscle memory. I’m even more impressed that you folks can do what you do.

Also, just for fun, since I posted that question I bought myself my first 2x2. I solved the first layer easily. Then I just stared at it and went “Hmmmmm”. I’m going to see what I can figure out before I search for a solution.

Thank you for the fast answers.

If you start with two look oll and 2 look pll you can cut down the amount of algorithms drastically while still having a fairly fast method. Have fun!

Wow, this rabbit hole gets deep fast doesn’t it.

I had fun solving the 2x2 last night. But the web page I used to find the algorithm for the top face just said “Keep doing this pattern until you have a completed face.” It was just R’ U’ R U’ R’ U2 R over and over until it worked. Sometimes I had to do that 4 or 5 times (perhaps more). But it was at least a solution. Then the final L’ U R’ D2 R U’ R’ D2 R2 to put the corners in the right order and I was done.

Not the best solution by far, but it’s the first one I learned and I did solve the 2x2 a dozen times or so.

So here’s a thought: When you folks see a new puzzle like the 4x4 or 5x5 or pyramid or that weird 3x3 cube where the 3 layers are different thicknesses, do you initially try to figure out solutions intuitively or is the joy (for you) in memorizing the algorithms and getting faster and smoother?

I guess the real question is this: Once you understand a set of algorithms needed to solve a puzzle is there a part of the joy of discovery which is lost for you? Or did it just shift the joy to a different level?

Boy, I can see how this could get really addicting. ;D

BTW, my 11 year old grand daughter was playing with my new 2x2 last night and I was really happy when she stopped for a moment and said “wait a minute, how did they build this so you can turn every layer in every direction?” I thought it was really cool that her curiosity helped her realize what a cool engineering problem the puzzle is.

I am actually a bit different than most cubers. As I learned “semi” intuitively and never used a tutorial to Learn initially. I tend to do this with all new puzzles I get, but eventually you should learn a proper method. Whenever I learn an actual method everything gets more fun, as it becomes more of a race against the clock. I have more fun with 3x3 now than I ever had before, even though I average 10 seconds and have done nearly a hundred thousand solves