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Beginner's Rubik's Cube Solution

Solve the cube with only 4 sequences!

 This solution is designed to be easy to memorise; It uses just 4 sequences in total which are summarised at the end of this tutorial. → →

The First Layer

Note: If you get stuck, feel free to ask questions in the shoutbox (left sidebar), or if you're lucky there may be someone who can help you in the Rubik's Cube Chatroom.

Make a cross

The first step is to build the yellow cross shown left.

Building the cross is simply a matter of inserting each of the 4 cross pieces, one by one, around the yellow centre. It is best if you manage to solve the cross on your own. But if you are stuck, try to get each cross piece into one of the following two positions, and then insert as shown:

Case #1
Case #2

Rotate the cross

Rotate the yellow cross until some of the colours around the sides begin to match. If you get it so that one colour matches, keep rotating futher. It is always possible to get at least 2 colours to match (click play).

If you're very lucky, it is possible that all 4 colours match. If this happens, you can skip the next step.

Swap the incorrect cross pieces

If you still have two bad cross pieces, you will need to swap them. There are two different possibilities. Either the two bad pieces are next to each other, or they are on opposite sides of the cube.

 Case #1 Case #2 You may click and drag the cube to rotate it The two bad pieces are next to each other. The two bad pieces are on opposite sides of the cube.

Both of these cases are really handled by the very same strategy. First, we move one of the bad pieces to the top layer. This is so that we can move the top layer independently from the bottom layer. Then, we rotate the bad piece on the top layer until it becomes positioned directly above where we want it to go. Then we rotate it to the bottom layer which solves it. This very same move also moves the other bad piece to the top layer, and we solve it using the same strategy in reverse.

 Your cube should now look like this.

Insert the 4 bottom corners

Next, you will insert the 4 yellow corner pieces into the bottom layer.

If there is a yellow corner on the top face, rotate the top face around until the corner is directly above the position where it must be inserted (click play).

In this case, the corner has red/green colours, and therefore must be placed above the red/green corner position.

Now you are ready to insert the corner, and there are three possible situations:

 Case #1 Case #2 Case #3 (Just a mirror image of the previous case) In this case, if you just twist the corner then it will match one of the previous cases.
 If a corner has already been inserted into the bottom layer the wrong way, first raise it to the top and then apply one of the previous cases.

Your first corner should now be solved. The other 3 yellow corners can also be solved in the same way as the first.

 Your cube should now look like this.
You have now solved 1/3rd of the cube!

The Second Layer

Insert the 4 middle edges

Once again, I just show you how to solve the first piece in this step, and the other 3 pieces can be solved in the same way. The following situations are possible:

 Case #1 Case #2 Case #3 (Just a mirror image of the previous case) By applying case #1 or case #2, you can "force out" a piece that was inserted the wrong way. Once you do this, you can apply one of the previous cases to insert it back the correct way.

Your first middle edge should now be solved. The other 3 middle edges can also be solved in the same way as the first.

 Your cube should now look like this.
You have now solved 2/3rds of the cube!

The Third Layer

Make the edges face up

 Case #1    → Case #2    → Case #3 Notice that each case is solved using the SAME solution! (It is important to hold your cube so that the pattern on top faces the same direction as the ones above.)
 Your cube should now look like this.

Make the corners face up

If you have exactly three corners to twist, then apply one of these cases:

 Case #1 Case #2 (Just a mirror image of the previous case.)

Otherwise, in any other case, simply apply case #1 holding the cube at a specific angle shown below:

Case #3
Case #4
Case #5
Case #6
Case #7
After applying any of these cases, your cube will be solvable using case #1 or case #2.

 Your cube should now look like this.

Correctly position the corners

Case #1
Case #2

(Just a mirror image of the previous case.)

Case #3

Here, simply rotate the top face around until it matches one of the previous cases.

Case #4

Here, just apply case #1 from any angle, and then your cube should match one of the previous cases.

 Your cube should now look like this.

Correctly position the edges

Do you remember the sequence of moves that will make 3 corners face up, and its mirror image? This is all you need to know to correctly position the edges.

Case #1

If you have exactly three edges wrong and they need to be rotated in a clockwise direction, then hold the cube so that those three edges are at the front, and apply the following two steps:

 Step #1 → Step #2 First, twist the corners clockwise. Next, twist them back to normal using the mirror image case. Magically, the edges are now solved!

Case #2

Otherwise, if you have exactly three edges wrong and they need to be rotated in an anti-clockwise direction, then simply do the mirror image of the above. That is:

 Step #1 → Step #2 First, twist the corners anti-clockwise. Next, twist them back to normal using the mirror image case.

Case #3

Otherwise, if you have four edges wrong, then apply case #1 from any angle, and the cube should then match one of the previous cases.

 Your cube should now look like this.
Congratulations! Your cube is now solved!

Memorisation

In total, this solution uses 4 different move sequences. If you can memorise these 4 sequences, then you can solve the cube anywhere and any time using this method:

 Sequence How to memorise Remember this sequence as a rhythmical beat: One - and - Two - and - Three - and - Four - and - . The bold part involves only the top face and follows the pattern ← → → ← The italic part follows the pattern (right side) ↑ ↓ (left side) ↑ ↓ In this sequence, note the following observations: The first three moves are anti-clockwise. The final three moves are clockwise. The first three moves use Red/White/Green. The final three moves use White/Green/Red. (It's the same three sides in a different order.) This is another beat: One - and - Two - and - Three - and - Four. The bold part follows the pattern ↑ ↓ ↑ ↓ The italic part consists entirely of clockwise turns of the top face. First, two short moves followed by one double move. (Down Down Down, Back Double), (Up Up Down, Back Double), Side Double.

The next step

Would you like to really understand how this works, and not simply memorise magic sequences? Then try my Advanced Rubik's Cube Solution.

More information about this approach: The general layer-by-layer approach described above is credited to mathematician David Singmaster and was first published in his 1980 book "Notes on Rubik's Magic Cube". A number of variations on this approach have appeared around the Internet ( such as Jasmine Lee's Beginner Solution to the Rubik's Cube) with the main differences being the order of the steps to solve the last layer and the particular sequences used to solve each step. In the variation described above, the steps and sequences have been chosen in a way that reduces the amount of memorisation that the solver needs to undertake, hopefully reducing the learning time.