Layer by layer
Layer-By-Layer, or normally only LBL is a group of methods that solves the cube in layers. In the basic, beginner LBL method, the solver finishes the layers one at a time: the first layer edges, then corners, then the second layer edges, and finally the last layer. This is the most common method for new cubers to discover on their own. In more advanced LBL methods, you solve layers more efficiently or solve two layers at once. For example, in the Fridrich method, one solves the first two layers simultaneously by forming a cross of the first layer edges, and then filling in four pairs of a corner and an edge into the so-called slots.
3x3x3 LBL Method
There are many 3x3x3 methods that fully or partially use a LBL approach, including CFOP, the method used by most top speed cubers in the world. Three examples of how cubers might approach LBL:
Introductory 3x3x3 LBL
At this stage the novice cuber truly completes each layer one after the other, using few algorithms but taking perhaps over 100 moves.
- Bottom layer corners
- Middle Layer edges
- 4-Look Last Layer, sometimes actually more like 8-looks by re-using algorithms
Intermediate 3x3x3 LBL
At this stage the cuber may develop strategies such as keyhole to reduce middle layer moves, as well as learning further last layer algorithms.
Advanced 3x3x3 LBL
The advanced LBL cuber often uses CFOP, employing fast, intuitive F2L techniques and learning many more last layer algorithms to reduce moves and improve speed further.
2x2x2 LBL Method
Done as if solving the 3x3 corners using the Layer-By-Layer method. You can use shorter last layer algs because there are no edges that need to be kept in position on a 2x2. You can use any OLL of your choice as long as the corners are in the correct position. There are two options for the last layer in a beginner 2x2 solve:
- Orientation followed by Permutation
- Permutation followed by Orientation
- How to solve the Rubik's cube The official beginner's guide on rubiks.com
- Jasmine Lee's Beginner Solution Excellent beginner's solution, more concise than the rubiks.com version.
- Andy Klise's beginner's guide (pdf) A "cheat sheet" summary version of Jasmine Lee's page, with less explanation.
- Beginners solution with animations Excellent tutorial at www.rubiksplace.com
- rubikscube.info Beginner LBL for the 2x2x2
- Tyson Mao's tutorial on rubiks.com
- CubeRight's Beginners Tutorial (HD) Excellent tutorial, easy transition to Fridrich method.
- Badmephiosto's Beginners Tutorial Quality tutorial, also designed for easy transition to Fridrich method
- Dan Brown's Beginner Method combines corner orientation/permutation into one step making the solve a little easier, but much slower and more difficult to transition to Fridrich (video)