Solving Rubik’s Cube

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The method described in these pages always leads to a solved Cube. It’s not the fastest or most efficient approach, but it does consist of fairly simple steps which are easy to memorize.

The steps need to be executed in the order. Solving the top layer disregards whatever happens to the other layers, so should be done first. Solving the middle layer ignores the final layer, so should be done second.

After that, the edges of the final layer are up. Rotating them to their correct orientation disregards their position, so should be third. Getting the edge blocks of the final layer in their correct positions leaves their orientation intact, so can and should be done after flipping them, so fourth.

The vertices of the final layer are last. First, get them in their correct locations. This leaves the edges of the final layer intact, so can be done after those. Finally, the vertices need to be turned to their correct orientation. This is done while leaving everything else intact, so should be the last step.

These are the steps:

  • Solve a single face, including the colors around its edge (in other words, solve a whole layer).
    1. Position and orient the edge blocks of the chosen face.
      (This is trivial and will not be explained separately.)
    2. Position and orient the vertex blocks.
  • Solve the middle layer adjacent to the face you started with.
    1. Position and orient the edge blocks below the vertices of the solved face.
  • Solve the bottom layer:

The twist sequences are written according to these conventions.

Rubik's Cube Faces and Directions

The twist sequence instructions are based on the six directions of the cube as shown in the diagram below, and the possibilities of quarter-twists clockwise (+) or counterclockwise (-), and 180 degree (2) twists.

So a sequence like F+ U- R2 means: twist the front face a quarter-turn clockwise, the upper face a quarter-turn counterclockwise, and the right face a full half-turn.

Clockwise and counterclockwise rotation are intended to be interpreted as if the face is in front of you. So B+ means twist the back face clockwise if it were facing you, which is the same direction as F- (front face counterclockwise).