# New cuber who wants advice/help

#### Praetorian

##### Member
Hello everyone, I have currently been cubing for 5 weeks and I currently use a Fangshi Shuangren 54.6mm as my main

I average 37 seconds, my F2L averages 21 seconds

I know 8 of the 21 PLL algorithms and I've recognized all of them, and my fastest PLL is the counter-clockwise U-Perm at 1.97 seconds

I use 2-look OLL

I use 2-look PLL with an A Perm (a) to permute corners when I don't know the algorithm for the PLL

My PB is 27.35 with no steps skipped

I am a color neutral solver although prone to white when nothing else looks good

I have 2 big obvious problems that I am having serious trouble with: my cross and my F2L

Making the cross is just hard for me, I usually finish it in 10 seconds, and F2L, I recognize cases but just take too long pauses between pairs although my execution of it is decently quick. I learned algorithms for my F2L, and the cases I don't know, I solve them with algorithms I already know

Where should I go from here? How could I improve my cross?

#### supercavitation

##### Member
Hello everyone, I have currently been cubing for 5 weeks and I currently use a Fangshi Shuangren 54.6mm as my main

I average 37 seconds, my F2L averages 21 seconds

I know 8 of the 21 PLL algorithms and I've recognized all of them, and my fastest PLL is the counter-clockwise U-Perm at 1.97 seconds

I use 2-look OLL

I use 2-look PLL with an A Perm (a) to permute corners when I don't know the algorithm for the PLL

My PB is 27.35 with no steps skipped

I am a color neutral solver although prone to white when nothing else looks good

I have 2 big obvious problems that I am having serious trouble with: my cross and my F2L

Making the cross is just hard for me, I usually finish it in 10 seconds, and F2L, I recognize cases but just take too long pauses between pairs although my execution of it is decently quick. I learned algorithms for my F2L, and the cases I don't know, I solve them with algorithms I already know

Where should I go from here? How could I improve my cross?
At your speed, the best way to get faster at F2L is just practice. Keep doing solves. Make sure you know your case intuitively as well as algorithmically. If you want to learn full PLL, I'd definitely recommend it, as it's pretty easy to learn.

As for cross improvement, do slow solves. Make sure your cross is as efficient as it can be, then work on executing it quickly. You will get faster.

Good Luck!

#### penguinz7

##### Member
do slow solves.
lots and lots. Try to do as much of the cross as you can without looking at it. Don't time it, just spend however long you need planning out as much of the cross as you can, then do what you've planned and see if it works.

#### Smiles

##### Member
watch example solves for cross

#### JemFish

##### Member
Make sure you know your case intuitively as well as algorithmically.
This is very very important. Even though, in the end, you want to be able to perform your F2L cases without thinking, you still need to understand how they actually work so that you can perform them from different angles, with different finger-tricks, and break some rules for special cases.

If you want to learn full PLL, I'd definitely recommend it, as it's pretty easy to learn.
This is the most important thing after F2L (and cross), IMHO. I recommend learning PLL very very well and get all your algs sub-2 (I need to work on that too...). Learning full OLL can come in later. I only know about 3/4 of my OLLs so far.

As for cross improvement, do slow solves. Make sure your cross is as efficient as it can be, then work on executing it quickly. You will get faster.
I would like to add that you should also be practising your cross blindfolded, and being able to solve it in as few moves as possible. I think that you should watch example solves as well as study top cubers' reconstructions.

#### Praetorian

##### Member
Am I supposed to formulate a little algorithm for solving the cross? Or work on solving a piece or more than one piece at a time? Most of my crosses I accidentally screw up one edge by trying to put another edge in place before adjusting it to the centers, or I have to put the last edge in, and if it's in the back, I have to do a B or B' to solve it which is a bit hard for me. I decide my cross color by how many edges are in place or 2 moves or 1 move away from being correct, but then I have a hard time deciding which move I do first, my planning isn't that great

#### Smiles

##### Member
it comes naturally. its hard to pick up without getting good awareness of piece relationships just by doing tons of solves and random twisting. example solves are a good place to go for this stuff because using words is a bad way to teach it.

#### Ordway Persyn

##### Member
I'd recommend watching some advanced cross tutorials and Just Practice cross a lot. It should take no more than 8 moves to make your cross.

#### supercavitation

##### Member
Am I supposed to formulate a little algorithm for solving the cross? Or work on solving a piece or more than one piece at a time? Most of my crosses I accidentally screw up one edge by trying to put another edge in place before adjusting it to the centers, or I have to put the last edge in, and if it's in the back, I have to do a B or B' to solve it which is a bit hard for me. I decide my cross color by how many edges are in place or 2 moves or 1 move away from being correct, but then I have a hard time deciding which move I do first, my planning isn't that great
Well, there's a great place to start, work on not screwing up any of the cross edges. That's a good system to pick your cross with, and your inspection will get better with practice.

Definitely focus on solving one piece while positioning another, or solving two pieces at once, all of the little tricks you can use to make your cross easier and more efficient will help.

#### Oatch

##### Member
In terms of your cross, using your inspection time is key to a fast cross and transition into F2L, being able to track all four of your cross pieces prior to starting the solve is an important skill to develop. Also knowing your colour schemes off by heart is essential. For a colour-neutral solver like yourself, you'll have it slightly harder off than someone who solves just white consistently (me), but knowing in the back of your head where each piece needs to go without really having to think about it will be helpful in the long run.

Another trick is to convert edges that are bad (takes more than 1 move to solve into into the down layer) into good edges (1 move to place). This is essentially done by integrating some setup into the necessary placement of edges in order to place them into a more favourable position. That may sound confusing but consider the simple scramble F' R U. With the standard scrambling orientation of white top green front, the yellow cross requires two more edges to complete it, the red-yellow piece and the green-yellow piece. In the case, the green-yellow piece is bad because it requires 2 or more moves to solve into the down face. The red-yellow piece however is good as it only requires 1 move to place into its correct spot (R'). However, rather than just placing the red yellow piece into the down face, then moving to solve the green-yellow piece after (which is quite inefficient), what you can do instead is to first do a U' to place the green-yellow edge into the right face with the red-yellow edge, then doing the R' to solve the edge. Notice that now the green-yellow edge is good, as it only requires an F to place it into its correct spot and finish the cross. This technique can cut down on unnecessary moves and thus make your cross much more efficient.

As others have said before me, stop timing yourself for a while and focus on doing slow solves. Though your execution of forming and inserting pairs may be quick, you may find that you are pausing after solving each to pair looking for the next one to solve. The technique that everyone would direct you to would be lookahead, which is the holy grail for getting fast at speedsolving. Essentially, it is to search for your next pair whilst inserting your current pair, and consequently this means you need to know your F2L cases really well so that you can solve them almost unconsciously. Practice doing solves with a metronome, and perform one turn for every beat. You should know exactly what you need to do before the next beat, and if there are any pauses then you'll know that you're not looking ahead well enough. Start with a slow tempo, and gradually build up as you improve. It may seem tedious or boring at first, but it really helps to eliminate the unneeded time that is wasted looking around, which could be as much as 10 seconds altogether.

CFOP is a very popular method, and you'll find a wealth of resources online. Watch example solves and tutorials, learn from the really fast cubers and how they would plan out their cross and F2L. Also, at this point I'd even recommend looking into different methods, as they might suit your style more. I myself began with CFOP as it was the first speedsolving method I knew of, but once I learnt ZZ I just can't go back. In any case it gives you a good idea of how to solve in a multitude of different ways and can enhance your overall understanding of the puzzle.

#### King Mike

##### Member
Hello everyone, I have currently been cubing for 5 weeks and I currently use a Fangshi Shuangren 54.6mm as my main

I average 37 seconds, my F2L averages 21 seconds

I know 8 of the 21 PLL algorithms and I've recognized all of them, and my fastest PLL is the counter-clockwise U-Perm at 1.97 seconds

I use 2-look OLL

I use 2-look PLL with an A Perm (a) to permute corners when I don't know the algorithm for the PLL

My PB is 27.35 with no steps skipped

I am a color neutral solver although prone to white when nothing else looks good

I have 2 big obvious problems that I am having serious trouble with: my cross and my F2L

Making the cross is just hard for me, I usually finish it in 10 seconds, and F2L, I recognize cases but just take too long pauses between pairs although my execution of it is decently quick. I learned algorithms for my F2L, and the cases I don't know, I solve them with algorithms I already know

Where should I go from here? How could I improve my cross?
Color neutral? NICE JOB!
Your cross should be no more than four seconds...

Here's a drill you can do:
Inspect your cube for 15 seconds.... (Memorize the quickest way and keep repeating the movements in your head)
Blindfold yourself.
Do you cross and take you blindfold off, after you think you did it.

It will be hard at first but then you can do your cross really without thinking too much, once you get good at this

This will also help because you can look for F2L pairs while you are doing your cross.

#### CubeCow

##### Member
You're doing really well for 5 weeks. I've being speedcubing 4 weeks and average 1:40 >.<

#### Praetorian

##### Member
Thank you all for your help, I really appreciate it. This community seems very outgoing and friendly, and willing to help.

#### Smiles

##### Member
^inb4 somebody quotes that with more helpful tips that have already been said

#### cashis

##### Member
Try other methods before you get really fast at cfop! You may like them more

#### Praetorian

##### Member
Try other methods before you get really fast at cfop! You may like them more
I tried CFCE but recognition was harder for me, I watched ZZ method solves before and it looked interesting because the idea of using R U and L moves seemed nice, and Roux I've never tried and Petrus I've never tried because I never got the hang of blockbuilding

#### maps600

##### Member
Good. You're colourneutral. Stay that way.

In terms of getting faster, just do lots of solves and improvement will come naturally at your speed. Continue learning PLLs and you should be sub 25 in no time.

#### Praetorian

##### Member
Recently my cross has improved a lot, I've watched example solves and can plan out my cross much better. I've stopped looking at the F2L case I'm currently doing since I can do them mostly with muscle memory so I can transition into my next pair more easily. I'm still having trouble executing E Perm and T Perm at the moment, and since I use a conjugated T Perm for my F Perm, it affects it aswell

##### Member
I highly recomend you, to learn algs for around 3 weird cases of F2L, the another, keep them intuitive, and try to learn to move the layers, only using the tip of your fingers (learning triggers also may help you), for the cross, the only way to improve your times, is slowly thinking the optimal way to put the four edge piece in the down face in the correct places (the magic number here is 7 moves, but recent research, demonstrated that most of the times, a cross can be done in 6 moves ) (yeah, the down face, that gives you a lot of vision), you can start with to edge pieces of the cross, in the right place, and the others wrong, when you, doing the cross that way, will be able to always finish the cross in less than 3.5 seconds, then, do the same exercise with only one edge piece of the cross, correctly positioned, keep doing that, and finally, try it again, with all the edge pieces of the cross in the wrong place (back then, in 2012, I had the same problem, I did that way, in 3 week, I was able to do the cross with to correct piece placed in 3.34 seconds, 5 weeks later I was able to the same, but with only one edge piece placed, in 3.45 seconds, and 1 month later, I was completely able to do any cross in the red face in less than 4 seconds)
about being colour neutral, I think that will suit you good only being two colour neutral, in example Yellow-White, because is easier to learn a good F2L and a good OLL and PLL, that way, cause the colors in the F, R, B, and L faces are the same, no mather if you start yellow or you start white
in a certain part of the future, being totally colour neutral really will be an advantage, but first you need to learn good F2L and a good OLL and PLL
in the future, there is a lot to learn, in my experience, due the numbers of cases, is better and easier to learn full pll , over full oll, but if you want to be good, you need to know them both
I hope you can progress
greetings from Chile
and sorry for my bad english

#### Smiles

##### Member
^stay full colour neutral if you can.