Hello Reddit!

Last week I competed in the Australian Nationals Rubik's Cube competition and I achieved a time of 12.99 with an average of 17.35 seconds.

I am here to shed some light on any questions you may have about the cube. I recently received a sponsorship to go to the competition and currently own around 57 puzzles of varying shapes and sizes with 3 more on the way.

So ask away reddit!

EDIT: Alright Reddit. I'm logging off for the night it's been awesome! Keep asking questions because I'll be back in 6 hours (need to get some sleep).

EDIT 2: I'm back! I tried to answer as many old questions as I could!

FINAL EDIT: It looks like this AMA is slowing down so I'm not going to be answering as many questions. Thank you all so much. I did not expect this response. If you have any questions talk to the guys over at /r/Cubers.

You guys are awesome!

Proof: https://www.worldcubeassociation.org/results/p.php?i=2014RANK01




http://imgur.com/PZYYR8Q - Collection photo

Comments: 1494 • Responses: 107  • Date: 

alexjbarnett678 karma

Let me ask the question on everyones mind.. Has this skill ever gotten you laid?

If so, how do i learn to do this?

IWillCube516 karma

Unfortunately not...

In case you are wondering to learn I would recommend this: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=609nhVzg-5Q

SickNDick972 karma

I expected a video on how to get laid.

IWillCube373 karma

Sorry to disappoint.

WhatsTheBigDeal61 karma

Did you get a job because of it? In pursuit of excellence style...

IWillCube74 karma

I feel like it helps in interviews and the like but I don't think it is the sole reason for me being hired/accepted etc.

uhhhhhhhhh_okay26 karma

Do you think it will ever get you laid?

IWillCube59 karma

I honestly don't know. It's a good conversation starter but that's about it.

beatricejensen191 karma

We Redditors are only willing to learn something if it gets us laid or hired.

IWillCube94 karma

Carry on then. Lmao

sloworfast2 karma

I glanced at this and it looks like a layer-by-layer method. I can solve layer-by-layer in about 90s, which is good for a party trick but quite sucky compared to you. I assume that's not actually the method you use? What method do you use?

IWillCube2 karma

I use a modified layer by layer method. I solve the cross and then solve the corners and edges together as opposed to individually. Then solve the last layer.

Samuel-pena457 karma

Have you ever been able to solve a Rubiks cube?

IWillCube229 karma

Yes? I'm not sure I understand.

benaugustine132 karma

I'm not sure if this is what this person means, but I am curious did you figure out how to solve a Rubik's cube first or did you look it up first?

IWillCube163 karma

I just looked it up. I was really young at the time and now I wonder if I could do it by myself now.

benaugustine61 karma

You didn't even try? I bought one a few years back and tried to see if I could solve it. Gave up after a couple days and learned to memorize it. I don't know all the algorithms though, just the one (set?) that works every time... slowly ~1.5 minutes.

IWillCube53 karma

I did try but once again I was very young and didn't really wrap my head around it.

araja123khan271 karma

Do you always use the same algorithm or you have various paths that you use to solve it?

IWillCube414 karma

Solving the first 2 layers of the cube is almost purely intuitive with a few (10-20) algorithms thrown in for tricky cases. However the last layer is entirely algorithmic. I use ~50 algorithms to solve the last layer of the cube.

araja123khan163 karma

Wow. That's a lot of algorithms. Do you have them memorised or do you come up with them as you go along?

IWillCube322 karma

I memorise them all. To learn one I just do it over and over for ~10 minutes and it becomes muscle memory.

araja123khan96 karma

How long have you been practising for?

IWillCube256 karma

Well I have been competitively solving for around 2 years but have taken large breaks. When I'm in the zone I do ~100 every day.

AdseyV255 karma

Hey mate, i used to get about 40secs but that required opening the cube up and wd40+(for memory) grinding a lil bit off the edges. Even that would snag sometimes.

Is there any cube brand that comes ready to solve fast?

IWillCube269 karma

Honestly if you look on any specialist cube store for where you live you can find an awesome speedcube. Most of them are around $12-20. But there are some cheap beauties like the YJ GuanLong

Just for reference as an Australian I prefer speedcube.com.au to buy my puzzles!

Evil_Pierce255 karma

Yes, I'll be sure to check out all the specialist cube stores in my area.

IWillCube60 karma

Where are you from I may be able to recommend you one.

YddishMcSquidish25 karma


IWillCube75 karma

I'd say thecubicle.us or speedcubeshop.com would be the best options.

YddishMcSquidish233 karma

For some reason I thought you had every brick and mortar store memorized, and we're going to send me to some back alley downtown where the hobos hang out.

IWillCube65 karma

Well in that case...

YddishMcSquidish23 karma

Tell me where I can find the hobos!

IWillCube199 karma

Walk down any street and throw change on the ground and they will come to you.

AdseyV33 karma

Hey im an aussie too, the plain rubiks cubs are $20 for a gaming store. Rediculous prices.

IWillCube71 karma

Try speedcube.com.au and get a cheap cube which is far better than a Rubik's Brand.

dewdrive10111 karma

For americans i recommend speedcubeshop.com

IWillCube10 karma

Or the Cubicle.us but I prefer speedcubeshop

graaahh10 karma

Out of curiosity, on a normal, not-greased-up Rubik's cube, how fast can you solve it?

IWillCube8 karma

Still like 22 on mine,

briareus08247 karma

If I replaced one coloured tile with a different colour, how long would t take you to realise something was wrong?

How long to solve the cube with the wrong coloured tile on the right face?

IWillCube274 karma

Probably around 10 seconds to realise something wasn't right.

As for the second question I'm not sure I understand.

bmarlon11122 karma

I think he means could you 'solve' it with the swapped tile. So solve it normally but ending up with only the swapped tile being out of place (even though it's where it should be if it hadn't been swapped)

IWillCube181 karma

Yes I could.

DaveSilver20 karma

For the second question, he means, how long would it take you to figure out what color the tile was supposed to be, and solve the puzzle so it was on the face it was originally meant to be on.

IWillCube31 karma

Oh, well probably another 5 or 6 seconds in that case.

gb20754 karma

He's asking how long would it take to solve a cube with a tile that is the wrong color. The answer, I believe, is no longer than a normal cube, as long as it's solveable?

IWillCube17 karma

Yeah? lmao

Bumble217152 karma

Hello! I am a casual cuber and also have a small collection of various different puzzles to entertain myself with. I was wondering what your favorite cube to solve is? Personally I love this bad boy.

IWillCube71 karma

I have a mirror block and love to solve it aside from that I love my 9x9 and my numerous 3x3s.

Bumble21716 karma

Thanks for the reply! Don't know if anyone else has asked for it yet, but could you showcase your collection a bit for us? I'm curious to see and may base my next purchase off something you could recommend just for a casual cuber.

IWillCube22 karma

I may add a collection photo tomorrow as it is after midnight atm. As for a recommendation the Valk III came out today and looks amazing so I will be picking that up.

Bumble2174 karma

I am looking forward to seeing them tomorrow! And I had to google what the Valk III was, but I may pick one up and start working on my time. I'd be happy getting under 30 seconds.

IWillCube4 karma

Glad to get you interested.

espresso_5131 karma

How do you "un-solve" a cube? By that I mean- how do you scramble it back up again? Do you just randomly mash it around or is there a standard way for competitions?

IWillCube224 karma

Volunteer scramblers are given a special set of instructions in the form of a 20 move algorithm for scrambling each cube so each competitor has the same scramble as the next.

Spicy_grandma127 karma

Have you ever chucked a rubix cube at a wall? I did and it exploded

IWillCube192 karma

I have restrained myself but have considered it.

Spicy_grandma87 karma

It looks cool, seeing all the colored blocks fly in different directions. 6/10, would recommend throwing one you don't need

IWillCube183 karma

proceeds to order $1000 worth of disposable cubes

laughs maniacally

ResistorTwister53 karma

proceeds to order $1000 worth of v-cubes


IWillCube27 karma

Thank you.

loppneli00238 karma

Except it would be like, three cubes. #Aus

IWillCube23 karma

The struggles.

Mr_Fasion63 karma

Sub 18 here. Just wanted to know what V permutation you use

Here's the one I use (and hate):

R' U R' d' R' F' R2 U' R' U R' F R F

For you non cubers: the letters are short for side twists. R is right, L is left U is upper, D is lower, F is front, B is back, lower case means you turn 2 layers, and ' means you turn the side counter clockwise instead of clockwise.

Also are you subscribed to /R/cubers?

IWillCube80 karma

I use the same as you but I am planning to change it very soon.

Yes I am subscribed to r/Cubers (looks like we leaked again lmao).

EquationTAKEN52 karma

(looks like we leaked again lmao)

How are you surprised? You ARE the leak.

IWillCube25 karma

I'm not.

Mr_Fasion14 karma

Ah okay, I'll keep looking for a good V perm then haha

IWillCube24 karma

Try algdb

LeJoker73 karma

I believe you guys are just making shit up to confuse the rest of us.

IWillCube12 karma


monkus2k61 karma

Stuck at the 20s barrier. any tips? Is it better to focus on getting faster at F2L (my look-ahead is pretty weak) or should I work on LL (my Gs are terrible but they're so obnoxious)?

Also, what's your best story from a cubing competition? Are there any ridiculous personalities in the speedcubing world?

IWillCube70 karma

F2L usually leaves the most room for improvement but the way I got sub-20 was by just drilling solves in the 1000s.

As for stories I'm not really sure. The fez at nationals was pretty fun but apart from that not a whole lot.

Sephiroth032743 karma

ELI5: F2L, LL, Gs?

IWillCube42 karma

First 2 Layers. The second step of the CFOP method which follows the white cross, basically you are solving the first two layers by inserting corners and edges.

LL= Last layer. The step after F2L

Gs make up 4 of the algorithms used for the last layer.

Hopefully that helps.

PurpleTopp16 karma

Fuckin G's, man. They are still the only algs I have yet to memorize, and I don't see me doing them any time soon. Lengthy AF

IWillCube28 karma

Just learn Ga and the rest are very similar.

They are an inverse, mirror and inverse mirror.

mostscreens45 karma

what do you think of magician steven brundage? Hes the rubix cube magician

IWillCube58 karma

Awesome guy. He frequents the /r/Cubers sub reddit and is generally pretty cool.

As far as his magic goes I love it as it combines two of my interests. Cubing and cardistry/magic.

musicalboy237 karma

What's your opinion on cross on left?

IWillCube33 karma

I knew it was coming haha. I think, like most people, it can be very fast but maybe not as fast because you are covering part of the cube hindering look ahead.

Shrimp12345636 karma

I can do one, but my average is 1-2 minutes. What are your tips for getting faster? At the moment my best times come when I push my hands at full speed, so I don't feel I can physically go any faster. Do I need new algorithms to get to super speed?

IWillCube63 karma

It sounds like you would benefit from a better cube. Try ordering one online. Apart from that I would recommend practice and maybe learning F2L and 4LLL. BADMEPHISTO has a good tutorial on both.

Shrimp12345613 karma


IWillCube14 karma

No problem

IWillCube22 karma

Yay! 1k up votes you guys are awesome!

GildoFotzo20 karma

What do you think is the perfect age to give a children a rubiks cube as a gift?

IWillCube27 karma

I received mine very young but I think around 10-12 is a great age to start.

original_greaser_bob12 karma

ever pump your self upto this?

IWillCube12 karma

Before each solve.

DotaDogma12 karma

Were there any transferable skills you learned from becoming a speedsolver?

IWillCube38 karma

Not too many apart from seeing patterns everywhere. I feel like it has kept me mentally sharp though.

DotaDogma10 karma

I can imagine. I'm bad enough after playing too much Boggle.

IWillCube21 karma

Millmills9 karma

I can solve a Rubik's cube, but it usually takes me about 2 minutes to solve. What is the trick to solving it so quickly? Is it a different algorithm or just finger quickness?

IWillCube10 karma

Different, more complex methods usually yield faster results as well as more algorithms. Finger tricks are developed naturally. If you want to get fast I recommend just practice until about the 1 minute mark.

DylanJigglesquirt8 karma

Hey man, great time. I have mine at an average of 50 seconds, fastest at 39, with the freidrichs method and i dont know where to go from here, any tips?

IWillCube10 karma

Practice your cross and F2L by drilling solves (timed and slow) it's how I got sub-18.


Hello there! Fellow solver here. Do you also have the desire you solve any Rubix cube that you see in the wild that's unsolved?

I've only been able to solve under a minute twice. For me that's really all I want. It's enough to get some wows from people who think it's nearly impossible to do.

IWillCube10 karma

You have no idea! xD

Yeah I agree. I feel like anything past 1 minute is just for your self and maybe to compete. That being said I don't regret it for one second getting this far.

Lasercoolman7 karma

Can you solve my rubiks cube? Ive been trying for more than a year.

IWillCube21 karma

Only if you send it in a bright pink bag.

darthvader198557 karma

What method do you use?

I used to cube and my pb was ~8 seconds and average was ~ 12-15 seconds and I used Friedrich (sp?). Is it the fastest method?

If you do Friedrich, do you use algorithmic F2L or intuitive?

IWillCube6 karma

I use Fridrich with intuitive F2L but I can also solve with Roux, Petrus and ZZ (slowly).

I am slowly getting to the level you were at lol. Averaging 16 at the moment.

darthvader198554 karma

Also, a really good way to improve is to focus on no cube rotations. It worked really well for me.

IWillCube6 karma


darthvader198551 karma

Do you already know all your OLLs and PLLs?

When I was at that level u was too lazy to learn all of them. For some situations I didn't even know full 2 step OLLs lol.

IWillCube2 karma

I know all PLL but 1 because I am lazy and a few OLLS.

Sammiver6 karma

I just ordered a MoYu TangLong, was this a good choice? I don't really know much about speedcubes anymore, The only speedcube I've bought in the past was a stickerless Dayan Zhanchi stickerless like two years ago, and my best time is only 37 seconds

IWillCube6 karma

From what I've heard the tangling is great but I don't have one so I can't give you too much help.

Yatopia5 karma


If you showed someone who doesn't cube, a video of yourself speedcubing in reaaaally slow motion, would you be able to explain why you do each individual move, or would some moves only be "part of an algorithm that rotates this corner clockwise and this counter-clockwise" for example?

In other words, do you know exactly how and why every algorithm you use work, or is it something you have no interest in and just make your fingers memorize it?

IWillCube6 karma

I feel like I could explain most of it if I tried but some of it would be algorithms that I don't exactly how they work. But yes my fingers do the memorising

MarsNirgal4 karma

As I don't know how to solve a cube, I can't ask any technical question, so...

What's your opinion about the trope of someone solving a Rubik's cube as a show of mental prowess?

(I'm thinking kinda like Will Smith in The Search of Happiness)

IWillCube5 karma

I think it is stereotyped as something only smart people can do which isn't entirely true. Anyone canon I t if they put their mind to it.

rayyyyy4 karma

Have you seen the video of the guy solving three cubes while juggling them? Is that as insanely impossible as it seems?

IWillCube4 karma

It is possible and amazing. I can hardly juggle so huge props to him.

kree84 karma

Hi. I feel what you do is awesome! Has working with Rubiks cube helped in your maths ability?

IWillCube13 karma

I naturally enjoy maths but I don't feel that is the most prevalent ability in being able to solve the Rubik's Cube. I feel like it more so involves spatial awareness. But to answer your question I don't think it has directly improved my maths ability but has helped to keep me mentally sharp.

ForenzikDetectif3 karma

With a brain like yours which can actually solve a rubix cube in such a short time...have you ever concidered that you would make a successful businessman with that brainpower?

IWillCube4 karma

I don't think it requires a load of smarts to solve one. Anyone can do it if they purest their mind to it. Honestly.

Muttson3 karma

Is the world record time a complete luck out on starting layout?

IWillCube11 karma

Not necessarily. It was lucky but Lucas (the world record holder) is a great cuber. Also in competition everyone gets the same scramble so everyone could have theoretically done the same thing as he did.

mooterskooter3 karma

I have been trying to 'do the cube' ever since it was released in the early 80's. okay, on and off...off mostly but I take one on holiday etc. and I've never done it, got close - about 4 bits in the wrong place.

My question is: I consider it cheating to 'learn from example' and want to crack it myself without any help. Is this a stupid idea?

IWillCube13 karma

I wouldn't call it stupid so long as you have a basic understanding of what you are trying to do and how you are doing it. In case you are wondering side by side is not the correct way.

LeagueOfLucian3 karma

How old were you when you first solved the 3x3?

IWillCube5 karma

Very young... Around 9.

lilmaniac23 karma

I teach programming courses to high school robotics students and always thought building a rubics cube solving robot would be a fun project for them, as an expert solver do you think this is feasible? I assume since its all algorithm based that could be coded into a computer, no?

IWillCube11 karma

Yes. The easiest way to do this would be to have a scanner that finds the optimal solution (20 moves or less) and have it perform those moves. The world record for a robot is around 1.4 seconds IIRC

ForenzikDetectif3 karma

Do you have big sponsors behind you?...like Tag Heuer or something?

IWillCube3 karma

No not really. Just some small cube retailing companies.

ztirk3 karma

I used to be a sub-30 (not sure if I am anymore). I use 2-look OLL instead of the full OLL.

Assuming that this thread has encouraged me to pick it up again and try improving my time, are there any resources that you use to help drilling crosses and F2Ls? Like some software that tracks your progress or a metronome of some sort.


IWillCube3 karma

Just cstimer.net is a timer great for timing your solves and at that level is what I would recommend to you.

ssanPD3 karma

Most people are asking speed cubing and solving in general but have you done any cube modifications of your own? Not just sanding the inside or using lubricant but turning a regular 3x3 cube into 3x4 or fischer's cube (I think that was one of them) or anything else?

IWillCube4 karma

I really want to make a 5x5 barrel but am a little busy at the moment but I would love to get into puzzle modding.

BlackFlaglIlI2 karma

Have you ever applied your skills somewhere besides rubiks cubes?

IWillCube3 karma

Not really. I don't think chess counts. Maybe finger dexterity developed from Rubik's cubing helped with cardistry but I'm not sure.

Bradel232 karma

I learned with the Petrus method and have just started trying to use F2L now that i'm under 2 minutes. With F2L, I end up spending a bunch of time on each pair just figuring out where the next 2 peices i'm working with are. How do I minimize this? do I need to try and predict where they will end up while i'm working the previous pair? Do you always solve the pairs in the same order, or do you just grab the first corner you see with your cross color on it and solve that one?

IWillCube2 karma

Practice is the best way to improve. Trust me.

Personally I just do whatever pair I see first rather than in any particular order.

TheLadyGuinevere2 karma

What kind of cube do you use? I used to have a really nice FangShi Shuang-Ren, but one of the center caps got lost, and it's.... It's just not the same, y'know?

I've kind of been out of the speedsolving community for a few years because all my friends got annoyed with all the clicking.

IWillCube4 karma

At the moment I'm using a WeiLong GTS but the Valk III just came out so if I get that...

TheLadyGuinevere2 karma

For reference, after my FangShi broke, I went back to my ZhanChi. On account of me not really doing it as much more than a party trick anymore. :(

IWillCube2 karma

For a recommendation if you want to get back into it the MoYu AoLong v2 is a great cube. If you want something more recent try the WeiLong GTS or YueXiao.

zoozema01 karma

Speedcuber in training here:

What cube do you use? Have you tried out the Gans Air?

What do you use for G perms? I find Badmephisto's algs pretty complicated and hard to memorize. Also related to G perms, what's your method for identifying which is which? I'm also having trouble with that.

Thanks for doing this AMA!

IWillCube2 karma

I have tried the Gans Air. Not a huge fan. I use a WeiLong GTS.

I use badmephistos algs and I recognise them like this.

All headlight son left

-Ga bar on front

-Gb bar on right back

-Gc bar on back

-Gd bar on right front.

Good luck in your cubing adventures!

fred16741 karma

I haven't cubed in a long time. I learnt and got my time to about a minute but where do I go from here? Do I need new algorithms (just using the standard ones atm I think) or do I just practice till I'm faster

IWillCube2 karma

New algorithms may help but learning F2L will help even more. Your times will get worse for a bit and then drop really quickly

theperson911 karma

Do any top level speed cubers use Roux? I've been using it since it seemed more fun than the layer by layer method, but I can't get much below a minute.

IWillCube1 karma

Alexander Lau is sub 9 with it and Vincent Wong is very fast aswell.

rinomar1 karma

If you dont solve the cube for a few weeks,do you forget some algorithms? How long does it take you to get back to your best form?

IWillCube3 karma

I don't forget algorithms usually.

I took a year long break and it took me a week to get it back.

rober115291 karma

Would you recommend learning all the OLL's first, or PLL's?

IWillCube2 karma

PLLs first then OLLS assuming you already know 4 look last layer.

852Foofer1 karma

Ok so, WHY are you a Rubik's Cube Speedsolver?

IWillCube1 karma

I don't know really. I am very obsessive. Before this it was chess then cardistry and back to this. I love the challenge to get faster and the community.

Hugh-Jass241 karma

Is there one algorithm that if repeated can solve the 3X3 cube? If so plz share unless that's your secret.

IWillCube5 karma

Unfortunately not. If that were the case anyone could solve it.

Well technically there is but you would need to do it ~43,000,000,000,000,000,000 times.

Stewy_1 karma

technically yes, it's called the devil's algorithm and is several millions upon millions of moves long, no human would ever be able to execute it in 1000 lifetimes

IWillCube1 karma

Hey Stewy! Looks like we may have leaked again. xD

koruption7071 karma

What got your interest in doing this? Do you do speed competitions for anything else?

IWillCube1 karma

I saw videos of people doing it really fast and thought I should learn!

I have competed in chess tournaments if that counts.

RiseOfTheTyrant1 karma

At what age did you lose your virginity and how much did it cost?

IWillCube2 karma

tree fiddy

oduh1 karma


This seems like a totally useless skill. I can solve the cube for less than a minute and I do this as a kind of stress relief. I can't imagine what would solving it in 12 seconds bring.

IWillCube1 karma

It's a weird feeling breaking your PB. But it's one of the best feelings. You go out to compete against yourself and you get a great sense of self achievement when you do succeed.

prairir0011 karma

One of my really really good friends is a speed solver and my dad was one too. My question is how did you start?

IWillCube2 karma

Got a cube for my birthday after seeing fast people it and thought I wanted to do the same

rage-rally-repeat1 karma


IWillCube2 karma

Because I saw people do it really quickly and wanted to do the same.

numerousblocks1 karma

What's your favourite Cube?

What gave you the idea to do this?

If you see somebody pulling of the colour stickers and putting them back on the cube to pretend that he/she solved it, what do you think/say?

Would you want to create your own variation of the Rubik's Cube?

Have you tried out the 4D Online Rubik's Cube?

IWillCube2 karma

My favourite cube is my WeiLong GTS

I saw fast people doing it online.

I mentally face palm each and every time.

Yes. I want to get into puzzle modding.

Not yet but I would like to.

reuscam1 karma

How do you feel about Rubiks Magick?

IWillCube2 karma

I feel it shouldn't be a wca event as it has the same solution each time which sort of goes against the idea of the WCA. Apart from that I think it's a pretty cool puzzle though.

CrosisBH1 karma

Any tips on getting the cross fast? It's like my worst part and I take like 4-5 seconds to do it.

IWillCube1 karma

Practice seeing your whole cross and doing it blindfolded. Also if you aren't already do it on the bottom. I used to suck at cross too but I just drilled solves and it got better.

ShawshankException1 karma

I can solve around 10 different variants of the rubiks cube, up to the 8x8x8 (because the higher ones are expensive as hell lol) but I can never up my speed. It takes me about a minute to solve the regular cube at my fastest and im considerably slow at completing the other cubes. Any tips on upping my speed?

IWillCube1 karma

Learn F2L and 4LLL and practice 3x3 ONLY! Your times should slowly decrease.