How to solve the Rubik’s Cube
Demonstrating the layer-by-layer method
1. white cross
2. white corners
3. second layer
4. yellow cross
5. yellow edges
6. yellow corners
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The method presented here divides the cube in layers and you can solve every layer one by one applying the given algorithm not messing up the pieces already in place. You find a separate page for each one of the seven stages if the description on this page is not enough.
To get started you need to know the Rubik’s Cube notation ie what the letters mean in the algorithms.
If you want to see how this cube solving method works or want to get further help then you might find interesting the online Rubik’s Cube solver program which uses similar steps. If you get stuck or you don’t understand something the software will help you. Just input the scramble of your puzzle and the program will show you the steps leading to the solution.
To keep a record of your solution times try the online Rubik’s Cube Stopwatch with graphical interface and scramble generator. The timer calculates your statistics and it is a useful tool for beginners and professionals too.
The Solution step by step
Let’s begin with the white face. First we have to make a white cross paying attention to the color of the center pieces. This step is quite intuitive, you can do it for sure. Just move the white edges to their places not messing up the ones already fixed.
If you don’t get along, you can check a little more help with animated algorithms clicking here.
In this step we have to arrange all the white corner pieces, so we finish the first face. This step is still intuitive, you can do it without learning any algorithm. If you don’t have patience I give you some clue. Move the white corner below the spot it’s going to come, then do one of the three algorithms according to the orientation of the piece, aka. in which direction the white sticker is facing. If the white corner piece is where it belongs but turned wrong then first you have to pop it out.
For more details about this step check out a more itemized description.
Until this point the procedure was intuitive, from now on we have to use some algorithms. In this step we will solve the first two layers (F2L). There are two algorithms we use, symmetric to each other, they’re called the F2L Right and F2L Left algorithms. These algorithms insert an edge piece from the top layer in the middle layer not messing up the already solved white face.
If an edge piece is on its place in the second layer orienting wrong then we have to apply the algorithm twice. First we must pop it out inserting an other one in its place.
See these permutations in action following this link.
Now make a yellow cross on the top of the cube. It doesn’t matter if the pieces are not on their final places so we don’t have to pay attention to the colors of the sides now. Just make a yellow cross on the top, we will swap them in the next step.
We can get three possible patterns on the top. We can get from one to the other pattern with a single algorithm as seen on the image: F R U R’ U’ F’
- If you have a yellow “L” shape you’ll have to apply the algorithm twice, holding the cube in your hands as seen on the image.
- In case of a horizontal line you just have to make the permutation once.
For further explication about this step please click here.
After making the yellow cross on the top of the cube you have to put the yellow edge pieces on their right places where they belong. Switch the front and left yellow edges with the following algorithm:
R U R’ U R U U R’ U
There are situations when you have to apply this algorithm more than once.
Only the last layer corner pieces left. First we have to get them to the right spot, so don’t worry about the orientation in this step.
Find a piece which is already on the right place, move it to the right-front-top corner then apply the following algorithm to switch (rotate) the three wrong pieces:
U R U’ L’ U R’ U’ L
Do this twice to do an inverse rotation of the pieces. If none of the yellow corners is on the right place then do the algorithm once so one of them will go to the right spot.
Now all the pieces are on their right places you just have to orient the yellow corner pieces.
Hold the cube in your hand so the piece you want to orient is on the front-right-top corner, than to the R’ D’ R D algorithm twice or four times until that specific piece is oriented well. It seems like you messed up the whole cube but don’t worry, it will be all right when all the corner pieces are oriented.
After that with a U’ turn move an other yellow piece you want to orient to the front-right-top corner of the cube and do R’ D’ R D again while this specific piece is ok. Be careful not to move the two bottom layers between the algorithms.
So close to the end but still this is the step in this tutorial where most people get lost. If this description doesn’t make sense, check out a few examples clicking here.
Repeat this until your Cube is solved
I hope this short tutorial made it easier for you to solve your Rubik’s Cube!
If you didn’t understand a word in this tutorial then you might use the online Rubik’s Cube solver where you just have to insert the colors of the scrambled puzzle and the program will tell you the steps to solve your cube.