hey everyone

  • mk1

    hey everyone

    howz it going everyone a “newbie” here. been practicing hi/lo countfor 2 weeks now. i started off as a slot machine dude. till i found out that when i won $750 off a machine it was pure luck not “skill”. than moved on to roulette and had my ups and downs. but after watching the discovery channel about the MIT group i got interested in BJ. i went to the horseshoe casino in council bluffs, iowa. just to practice my counting. i think i fairly did well scanninng the table. seen a guy stand on a pair of 7’s when dealer was showing 10 thought it was awkward. lol. anywho i’ll probably practice counting and memorizing basic strategy. till summer and try my luck on a min. $5 table. anyway advice from you blackjack pros would be much appreciated thanks.

  • Paradox

    Stop playing

    Stop playing in a casino, get a few books and CVBJ. Give it a few months of practice and then beat the **** out of the casinos. Don’t pay for your education in a live casino. Advantage play is about making money NOT gambling.
    I’d start with either Bootlegger’s 200-Proof BJ or The Big Book of Blackjack by A. Snyder, then Professional BJ by S. Wong. Follow that up with Blackjack Secrets by Wong and Blackbelt in BJ. The final Book to read before you go into a casino should be Blackjack Attack 3. If you practice a lot you will have no problem slamming out the money over time providing you have the bankroll.

    Paradox

  • Paradox

    I forgot to mention

    Join BJ21’s greenchip and read, read read. You will also want to read the complete library at blackjackforumonline.com. These are invaluable sources of information. Read, don’t post much in the beginning. Learn from other’s mistakes.

    Paradox

  • mk1

     

    will do. thanks for your advice. yea i just ordered a copy of professional blackjack off of amazon today.

  • MartyAce

     

    I’m in the Cedar Rapids area, however, I’m away for school.. Maybe we can arrange something.

  • sagefr0g

     

    hey mk1 your story sounds a lot like mine. hope you have as good a luck as i have. get that basic strategy down pat. and if you use hi/lo then learn the illustirious 18 and the fab four. learn how to bet optimal and learn about risk of ruin. and never over bet. become aware that there are many differant versions of blackjack according to the rules, number of decks and penetration. learn what that means with regard to your advantage and basic strategy plays and betting strategy. keep in mind you want to keep your advantage play incognito.

  • mk1

     

    Quote: sagefr0g said:
    hey mk1 your story sounds a lot like mine. hope you have as good a luck as i have. get that basic strategy down pat. and if you use hi/lo then learn the illustirious 18 and the fab four. learn how to bet optimal and learn about risk of ruin. and never over bet. become aware that there are many differant versions of blackjack according to the rules, number of decks and penetration. learn what that means with regard to your advantage and basic strategy plays and betting strategy. keep in mind you want to keep your advantage play incognito.

    yea definately i still got a long way to go.
    so how’d you get started?

  • mk1

     

    Quote: MartyAce said:
    I’m in the Cedar Rapids area, however, I’m away for school.. Maybe we can arrange something.

    no kidding?
    well im in omygod (omaha), nebraska.(the good life ahaha)
    my wifes friend is from cedar rapids ,iowa. where do you go to school?

  • wvbjplayer

    beware of automatic shufflers & CST

    Quote: mk1 said:
    howz it going everyone a “newbie” here. been practicing hi/lo countfor 2 weeks now. i started off as a slot machine dude. till i found out that when i won $750 off a machine it was pure luck not “skill”. than moved on to roulette and had my ups and downs. but after watching the discovery channel about the MIT group i got interested in BJ. i went to the horseshoe casino in council bluffs, iowa. just to practice my counting. i think i fairly did well scanninng the table. seen a guy stand on a pair of 7’s when dealer was showing 10 thought it was awkward. lol. anywho i’ll probably practice counting and memorizing basic strategy. till summer and try my luck on a min. $5 table. anyway advice from you blackjack pros would be much appreciated thanks.

    Here is the single most important piece of advice you will ever hear: before betting so much as a nickel at the tables, MAKE SURE THEY DON’T USE AUTOMATIC SHUFFLERS WITH CARD-SCANNING TECHNOLOGY. If they do, chances are they put the technology to work by high-low stacking the shoes. In a high-low-stacked shoe, there is no way the player can win over time. In fact, it’s virtually certain that you’ll be wiped out within a matter of hours, the size of your bankroll aside. (Is this cheating? Of course. Would anyone ever be able to prove it? No, probably not. And anyone who could could also be bought off 100 times over by a casino with even modest profits.)

    However, even if the casino does not use automatic shufflers with CST, the mere presence of automatic shufflers alone should give a card-counter serious pause, particularly if one shoe is being shuffled the whole time another shoe is in play. Why? Because the longer cards are shuffled, the more evenly they’re likely to be distributed (i.e., the more likely a general high-low pattern will emerge). This method achieves the same effect as using CST without actually cheating: shoes decidedly unfavorable to the player.

    Incidentally, I’ve learned all this the hard way, having lost over $2,000 playing blackjack at a casino which utilizes at least automatic shufflers of the type described above, if not CST as well. I didn’t know the cards were shuffled continuously for 20-25 mins (the avg. length of a shoe) until I was already down a grand or so. After I learned this troubling fact, I persisted mostly out of stupidity and stubborness, but also curiosity: I wanted to see if, as one would expect under such conditions, the count seldom strayed far from zero (i.e., stayed very close to neutral from start to finish). And indeed it did not: out of approx 300 shoes played, I’d estimate that no more than a dozen reached counts of > +7 (or, for that matter, < -7), and no more than three or four exceeded > +10. And of those, ALL of them swung back to zero (or thereabouts) within a hand or two.

    The mission was utterly hopeless; that I sat there getting abused for so long is a testament my boundless stupidity, yes, but also to my naive skepticism that a casino would resort to such underhanded tactics to deter counters and substantially enhance their takings from blackjack. Boy, did *I* receive an expensive education!

    wvbjplayer

  • sagefr0g

     

    Quote: mk1 said:
    so how long have you been playing?
    and how “well” are you doing

    just over two years. made seven grand starting with three hundred dollars and then lost almost a grand of that. stopped for a while after the big loss to take stock of my situation. truly i experienced a lot of luck when considering how i was able to start with such a small bankroll. i only ever played small stakes, mostly nickle tables. having such a small bankroll is definately not a recommended way to start out.
    at this point i don’t play as much and when i do i don’t use orthodox card counting methods any more. just try a little gamble now and then on what i percieve are advantage situations with my own personally crafted way of trying to mimic card counting with out really counting the cards per se. i call it the fuzzy count and it so far isn’t much more than card watching where you try and gauge the relative richness of aces & faces to the small cards (2 thru 6).
    purely a recreational pursute for me now with the hope that i can at least break even or with some luck and a small measure of skill come out a little ahead or hopefully if not then i don’t expect my loss’s to be monumental.
    if i ever become convnced that i’m losing more than say i might spend playing golf or something i’d go back to the drawing board and come up with a solution or quit. lol
    definately not recommended. that’s just what i’m up to at the present. personally i find card counting frustrating and tedious where for me personally the rewards are not worth the effort. but i enjoy playing and remain hopeful about winning by obtaining an advantage so i employ these little short cuts and soldier on with little expectation other than having a good time hopefully for free.

  • InPlay

     

    Quote: wvbjplayer said:
    Here is the single most important piece of advice you will ever hear: before betting so much as a nickel at the tables, MAKE SURE THEY DON’T USE AUTOMATIC SHUFFLERS WITH CARD-SCANNING TECHNOLOGY. If they do, chances are they put the technology to work by high-low stacking the shoes. In a high-low-stacked shoe, there is no way the player can win over time. In fact, it’s virtually certain that you’ll be wiped out within a matter of hours, the size of your bankroll aside. (Is this cheating? Of course. Would anyone ever be able to prove it? No, probably not. And anyone who could could also be bought off 100 times over by a casino with even modest profits.)

    However, even if the casino does not use automatic shufflers with CST, the mere presence of automatic shufflers alone should give a card-counter serious pause, particularly if one shoe is being shuffled the whole time another shoe is in play. Why? Because the longer cards are shuffled, the more evenly they’re likely to be distributed (i.e., the more likely a general high-low pattern will emerge). This method achieves the same effect as using CST without actually cheating: shoes decidedly unfavorable to the player.

    Incidentally, I’ve learned all this the hard way, having lost over $2,000 playing blackjack at a casino which utilizes at least automatic shufflers of the type described above, if not CST as well. I didn’t know the cards were shuffled continuously for 20-25 mins (the avg. length of a shoe) until I was already down a grand or so. After I learned this troubling fact, I persisted mostly out of stupidity and stubborness, but also curiosity: I wanted to see if, as one would expect under such conditions, the count seldom strayed far from zero (i.e., stayed very close to neutral from start to finish). And indeed it did not: out of approx 300 shoes played, I’d estimate that no more than a dozen reached counts of > +7 (or, for that matter, < -7), and no more than three or four exceeded > +10. And of those, ALL of them swung back to zero (or thereabouts) within a hand or two.

    The mission was utterly hopeless; that I sat there getting abused for so long is a testament my boundless stupidity, yes, but also to my naive skepticism that a casino would resort to such underhanded tactics to deter counters and substantially enhance their takings from blackjack. Boy, did *I* receive an expensive education!

    wvbjplayer

    I know what you are talking about it seems like the count never strayed from IRC. It seems like it must have been for about 10 shoes in a row if you can believe that. Then all of a sudden up pops 15 postive shoes in a row. Can you believe that ? What does that mean ? Was the shuffler broke or did it reverse itself by the magical little dwarfs that set the cards ? I don’t know !

  • sagefr0g

     

    Quote: wvbjplayer said:
    ………… I didn’t know the cards were shuffled continuously for 20-25 mins (the avg. length of a shoe) until I was already down a grand or so. After I learned this troubling fact, I persisted mostly out of stupidity and stubborness, but also curiosity: I wanted to see if, as one would expect under such conditions, the count seldom strayed far from zero (i.e., stayed very close to neutral from start to finish). And indeed it did not: out of approx 300 shoes played, I’d estimate that no more than a dozen reached counts of > +7 (or, for that matter, < -7), and no more than three or four exceeded > +10. And of those, ALL of them swung back to zero (or thereabouts) within a hand or two.

    ……

    wvbjplayer

    are you talking true count or running count when you say >+7 <-7 & >+10 ?

  • golfnut101

    ASM’s

    I frequent a couple of stores that use these, and I dont see this pattern at all. I have had rich counts early in a shoe, late in a shoe. I have backcounted
    five or six shoes, with not much happening, to finally find a pos situation, and not only stay pos for most of shoe, but, to find next couple of shoes excellent opportunities. So, I cant say I have seen it. But, by no means am I saying I have the knowledge of different types of ASM’s, nor am I even remotely an expert with this machine. Anyone with any experience with these machines care to weigh in ?

  • Cardcounter

    Advanced plays!

    In a one deck game staying on 7-7 vs a 10 is the best play. I consider it an advanced play even though it is basic stragedy because you are suppose to hit other forms of 14 vs a 10 such as 10-4 or 8-6. Another advanced play is hitting 10-2 vs a 4 this is not a basic stragedy play because basic stragedy says to stay on a 12 vs a 4 however if your hand is made up of 10-2 rather than another combo such as 9-3 hitting is the mathimatically correct play!

  • Persnickety1

     

    Quote: wvbjplayer said:
    Here is the single most important piece of advice you will ever hear: before betting so much as a nickel at the tables, MAKE SURE THEY DON’T USE AUTOMATIC SHUFFLERS WITH CARD-SCANNING TECHNOLOGY. If they do, chances are they put the technology to work by high-low stacking the shoes. In a high-low-stacked shoe, there is no way the player can win over time. In fact, it’s virtually certain that you’ll be wiped out within a matter of hours, the size of your bankroll aside. (Is this cheating? Of course. Would anyone ever be able to prove it? No, probably not. And anyone who could could also be bought off 100 times over by a casino with even modest profits.)

    However, even if the casino does not use automatic shufflers with CST, the mere presence of automatic shufflers alone should give a card-counter serious pause, particularly if one shoe is being shuffled the whole time another shoe is in play. Why? Because the longer cards are shuffled, the more evenly they’re likely to be distributed (i.e., the more likely a general high-low pattern will emerge). This method achieves the same effect as using CST without actually cheating: shoes decidedly unfavorable to the player.

    Incidentally, I’ve learned all this the hard way, having lost over $2,000 playing blackjack at a casino which utilizes at least automatic shufflers of the type described above, if not CST as well. I didn’t know the cards were shuffled continuously for 20-25 mins (the avg. length of a shoe) until I was already down a grand or so. After I learned this troubling fact, I persisted mostly out of stupidity and stubborness, but also curiosity: I wanted to see if, as one would expect under such conditions, the count seldom strayed far from zero (i.e., stayed very close to neutral from start to finish). And indeed it did not: out of approx 300 shoes played, I’d estimate that no more than a dozen reached counts of > +7 (or, for that matter, < -7), and no more than three or four exceeded > +10. And of those, ALL of them swung back to zero (or thereabouts) within a hand or two.

    The mission was utterly hopeless; that I sat there getting abused for so long is a testament my boundless stupidity, yes, but also to my naive skepticism that a casino would resort to such underhanded tactics to deter counters and substantially enhance their takings from blackjack. Boy, did *I* receive an expensive education!

    wvbjplayer

    I do not agree with your logic regarding automatic shufflers (ASMs). What you witnessed was just coincidence. For a simple counter, it just doesn’t matter for how long the decks are being shuffled, counting doesn’t work that way. Yes, there are tables with sophisticated card scanning technology (Mindplay), and yes, the pit can indeed know which cards are on the way ahead of time, but there is no way they stack the decks. Those are pretty expensive tables and tend not to be used on nickel limits.

    There is such things like shuffle tracking, but that’s beyond counting, probably way beyond MK1’s abilities.

    Don’t confuse the new guy. ASMs are OK, it’s the continuously shuffling machines (CSMs) that are bad.

    My advice for MK1: read that book you ordered; practice, practice, practice (using software); make sure you understand the concept of basic strategy, counting, bankroll, self discipline.

    Don’t allow yourself to be overwhelmed, don’t obsess, don’t get illusions of getting rich.

  • wvbjplayer

     

    Quote: sagefr0g said:
    are you talking true count or running count when you say >+7 <-7 & >+10 ?

    Sorry, should’ve been clearer: running. The true counts remained literally (virtually) zero each and every time. The highest I think I ever encountered was about +3.

    wvbjplayer

  • wvbjplayer

     

    Quote: Persnickety1 said:
    I do not agree with your logic regarding automatic shufflers (ASMs). What you witnessed was just coincidence. For a simple counter, it just doesn’t matter for how long the decks are being shuffled, counting doesn’t work that way. Yes, there are tables with sophisticated card scanning technology (Mindplay), and yes, the pit can indeed know which cards are on the way ahead of time, but there is no way they stack the decks. Those are pretty expensive tables and tend not to be used on nickel limits.

    There is such things like shuffle tracking, but that’s beyond counting, probably way beyond MK1’s abilities.

    Don’t confuse the new guy. ASMs are OK, it’s the continuously shuffling machines (CSMs) that are bad.

    My advice for MK1: read that book you ordered; practice, practice, practice (using software); make sure you understand the concept of basic strategy, counting, bankroll, self discipline.

    Don’t allow yourself to be overwhelmed, don’t obsess, don’t get illusions of getting rich.

    Are we both talking about 6-8D shoes? If you’re referring to shoes w/ fewer decks, I have no experience with those and thus would not be surprised if your observations differed markedly from mine.

    However, your coincidence theory, while superficially plausible, does not persuade me. Initially it did. Initially I was convinced of it, in fact. Then I kept playing, and kept observing more and more stagnant counts. I’m not talking 5 or 10 in a row here. I’m talking about approx 300, and sometimes as many as 20 or 25 consecutively!

    Alas, I didn’t have enough money to conduct further testing.

    If there’s a single member of this forum who has made more than a few hundred bucks counting cards at Wheeling Island in Wheeling, WV, I would greatly appreciate him/her stepping forward and explaining how s/he did it. It would be a relief, actually, b/c then I’d know I was simply the victim of bad luck rather than duplicity.

    wvbjplayer

  • wvbjplayer

     

    Quote: golfnut101 said:
    I frequent a couple of stores that use these, and I dont see this pattern at all. I have had rich counts early in a shoe, late in a shoe. I have backcounted
    five or six shoes, with not much happening, to finally find a pos situation, and not only stay pos for most of shoe, but, to find next couple of shoes excellent opportunities. So, I cant say I have seen it. But, by no means am I saying I have the knowledge of different types of ASM’s, nor am I even remotely an expert with this machine. Anyone with any experience with these machines care to weigh in ?

    Are those “stores” perhaps located in Vegas or AC, and large enough, profitable enough, and sufficiently well-established to sustain the occasional losses counters cause them (not to mention likely to harbor a healthy fear of the state gaming commission)?

    wbjplayer

  • sagefr0g

     

    Quote: wvbjplayer said:
    Sorry, should’ve been clearer: running. The true counts remained literally (virtually) zero each and every time. The highest I think I ever encountered was about +3.

    wvbjplayer

    wow?? ok well i sure don’t know….. omg i have to be thankful i’ve never run into that bad of situation. 300 shoes and virtually tc=0 all the time except maybe twelve of the shoes….i mean i thought i’d seen a lot of dead shoes in my time!….. that’s only 4% of the shoes ever exceeding a true count of zero!! just guessing here but i would expect maybe sixty percent of the shoes might hang on zero, about 20% hang in the negative range and about 20% go positive to some significant degree …… something like that.
    that is mind boggling……… and your sure your counting correctly, i’m sure.
    well yeah it would indeed be interesting to hear from someone who has been to Wheeling Island to see what their experience has been.
    oh yeah, just curious how many players on average were at the tables you played? i mean lets see three hundred shoes is pretty many. what would that be about 4,711 rounds if say four players over sixty hours of play? sound about right? what would that be around ten or more days of playing six or so hours a day?

    edit =====>>>> hold on here a minute wvbjplayer….. i just checked an old post of yours: http://www.blackjackinfo.com/bb/showpost.php?p=67040&postcount=32
    inwhich you say ….”I didn’t really understand this, because, at least where *I* play, after every round a black, mechanical box containing a new 6 or 8 decks of cards (presumably having been shuffled by some kind of automatic shuffler) rises up from behind the table and the discards are simply removed from the discard tray and set into the other side of the box, which then disappears under the table.”
    uhmm that sounds like it could be some sort of new variant of a continuous shuffle machine CSM and not an regular automatic shuffler or ASM.
    from whence do they pull the cards that they are dealing to you? is it a shoe that you can see and no new cards are being introduced or are they taking the cards dealt out of this machine?

  • Persnickety1

     

    Quote: wvbjplayer said:
    Are we both talking about 6-8D shoes? If you’re referring to shoes w/ fewer decks, I have no experience with those and thus would not be surprised if your observations differed markedly from mine.

    Thankfully I haven’t seen any Mindplay or other fancy card scanning tables in my neck of the woods. I will agree with you that those should be avoided. Not because I believe the order of cards being spit out can be specified, but because the software analyzes each player’s patterns taking into consideration the upcoming (scanned) cards. I hear they “preferentially shuffle” the shoe early when the software triggers a “projected big winner” alarm.

    The closest hand-shuffled casino for me is about 80 miles away. The closer places all use ASMs, for all decks, even for the single deck games. However, the shuffle times out after a preset amount of time, it doesn’t go on forever. You just hear it stop huffing and puffing, the tray lifts up, and I think a button lights up.

    Quote:
    However, your coincidence theory, while superficially plausible, does not persuade me. Initially it did. Initially I was convinced of it, in fact. Then I kept playing, and kept observing more and more stagnant counts. I’m not talking 5 or 10 in a row here. I’m talking about approx 300, and sometimes as many as 20 or 25 consecutively!

    Alas, I didn’t have enough money to conduct further testing.

    I am having a hard time believing the idea that the cards will somehow arrange themselves high-low if shuffled long enough. Statistically, that’s just as improbable as them arranging themselves in numerical order. It might seem logical, but that wouldn’t be random.
    The longer the decks are being shuffled, the more random the cards should become. And I define “random” as devoid of discernable patterns.

  • Ferretnparrot

     

    Quote: sagefr0g said:

    edit =====>>>> hold on here a minute wvbjplayer….. i just checked an old post of yours: http://www.blackjackinfo.com/bb/showpost.php?p=67040&postcount=32
    inwhich you say ….”I didn’t really understand this, because, at least where *I* play, after every round a black, mechanical box containing a new 6 or 8 decks of cards (presumably having been shuffled by some kind of automatic shuffler) rises up from behind the table and the discards are simply removed from the discard tray and set into the other side of the box, which then disappears under the table.”
    uhmm that sounds like it could be some sort of new variant of a continuous shuffle machine CSM and not an regular automatic shuffler or ASM.

    I am pretty sure these are just automated shuffle machines as if you goto the shufflemaster gaming website thats what they say they are, One features they have is the ability to detect if too few cards are present or if there are extra cards which it will confirm prior to sending each shoe out of the machine. I know this because i once saw a shoe refused entree into play because the machine said it was missing a card, also the websight says so, that is the only feature it says it has, they later found jammed in the machine.
    They work with two shoes typically one red and one blue, one is in the machine getting shuffled and the other in play. The entire shoe is played and there are clearly two shoes each of a different color.

    The “I-shoe” which the website also bosts would be recegnisable because it is black, not the typical white plastic that most shoes are, iv never seen those before though.

  • sagefr0g

     

    Quote: Ferretnparrot said:
    I am pretty sure these are just automated shuffle machines as if you goto the shufflemaster gaming website thats what they say they are, One features they have is the ability to detect if too few cards are present or if there are extra cards which it will confirm prior to sending each shoe out of the machine. I know this because i once saw a shoe refused entree into play because the machine said it was missing a card, also the websight says so, that is the only feature it says it has, they later found jammed in the machine.
    They work with two shoes typically one red and one blue, one is in the machine getting shuffled and the other in play. The entire shoe is played and there are clearly two shoes each of a different color.

    The “I-shoe” which the website also bosts would be recegnisable because it is black, not the typical white plastic that most shoes are, iv never seen those before though.

    well this is what i thought at first also but read his post again. he states this occurs after EVERY ROUND…..”after every round a black, mechanical box containing a new 6 or 8 decks of cards (presumably having been shuffled by some kind of automatic shuffler) rises up from behind the table and the discards are simply removed from the discard tray and set into the other side of the box,”
    i’ve never seen an ASM that comes into play after every round…..

  • jack,jackson

     

    Quote: Cardcounter said:
    In a one deck game staying on 7-7 vs a 10 is the best play. I consider it an advanced play even though it is basic stragedy because you are suppose to hit other forms of 14 vs a 10 such as 10-4 or 8-6. Another advanced play is hitting 10-2 vs a 4 this is not a basic stragedy play because basic stragedy says to stay on a 12 vs a 4 however if your hand is made up of 10-2 rather than another combo such as 9-3 hitting is the mathimatically correct play!

    In support of your post here, I would also like to add its logical to stand 77vsX in a DD game at about half the Index of 14vsX.

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