Introduction: How to Solve a 3-layer Cube?
CHOOSE A CUBE
SOLVING THE FIRST CROSS
SOLVING THE BOTTOM CORNERS
SOLVING THE MIDDLE LAYERS
SOLVING THE TOP CROSS
SOLVING THE TOP, MIDDLE PIECES
Step 1: Choose a Good Cube
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Step 2: SOLVING THE FIRST CROSS
This step, along with the next step, are the most difficult to teach because there are so many possible starting situations. Luckily, after these steps it takes very little effort to solve the rest of the cube, so please be patient on steps one and two.
In this step, it is important to remember that the very center piece of each side of the cube doesn’t move, making it that side’s respective color. You must bring all of the other pieces with that color to that side. In the example below we bring the red/green piece to match with the red and green sides. Below are the most common moves for this step. If your cube doesn’t match any of the three starting positions shown below you may need to move some pieces around to get there. You must do this on four sides in order to make a cross like the “after” picture below. So in the example below, I would first get the red/green block in the correct spot (as shown in the “after” picture) then do the yellow piece, then blue, then white.
Step 3: SOLVING THE BOTTOM CORNERS
Again, this step is a little harder to teach than the steps to follow because of the amount of possible starting situations, but the pictures below should help you through it.
Find a corner piece on the bottom layer that belongs on the top. In our example pictures this is any corner piece with green in it. Move this piece until it is situated on the bottom layer directly below its appropriate place in the top layer of the cube. In other words, the spot where the piece should start out should be in the same column as the spot where you want the piece to end up. Then, refer to the pictures below to solve. Make sure you are looking at the correct starting picture. Do this step to all four corner pieces.
Step 4: SOLVING THE MIDDLE LAYERS
Before you start this step, flip the cube over so the face that is complete is now the bottom. In the pictures, this is the green side. Now, turn the top layer of the cube to match either of the “before” pictures below. This will make an upside down “T” with one color. We will move that top middle piece to the correct spot on the middle row in this step (as shown in the “after” picture). There are two ways to do this depending on which side the “T” is on when you’re looking at the cube. Make sure to find the correct starting picture before doing this step. Repeat this step with all four sides. (HINT: If you ever get stuck where there aren’t any useful pieces on the top layer then do one of the moves below in reverse.)
Step 5: SOLVING THE TOP CROSS
In this step, the goal is to get the top face of the cube to have a cross. In the “after” picture below this is the blue side. You start out by facing a side of the cube that has a blue piece (or whatever your top color is) in the top layer in the front left position (refer to the “before” picture below). It‘s okay to have a blue piece in the front right position as well, but the key is to make sure that there is a blue piece on that front left side. You then follow the moves in the pictures below. Just doing this step once most likely won’t be enough. You may have to repeat the step a few times until there is a cross. You will also likely have to rotate the cube in your hands to manipulate different sides (still make sure a blue piece is in the front left position!).
Step 6: SOLVING THE TOP, MIDDLE PIECES
Once you have the cross at the top, the next step is to get all of the top middle pieces to be on the correct sides. This step, like the previous step, will most likely need to be repeated several times. A useful tip is that, when you have two adjacent sides in the correct place, rotate the cube in your hands so that those two sides are in the back right and front right positions, then repeat this move once more. After doing this, the top pieces will all be in the correct order but will need to be rotated around the cube until they are on their correct sides. (HINT: when performing this step, keep in mind that the front left piece will not move.)