Money Management for the Non-Counter
  • Although I am a beginner and only play basic stratgey plus a few tips from the BLUEBOOK II, I am certain that Money Management plays a vital role in having success at the table.

    Any reccomendations for items that deal with Money Management for the $5 and 10 dollar player?

    Thanks.....
  • For the $5 and $10 better I suggest that you bring about $200 to the casino with you. I prefer that the $200 you bring with you is money that you can afford to lose. Things are really easy when you are winning and very difficult when you are losing. Always play with in your means.
  • Thanks. I am presently using a $300 bankroll. What I am trying to learn are the methods that will allow me to hang in there untill the cards turn my way, then be in a position to take my best shot.
  • dr3putt said:
    Thanks. I am presently using a $300 bankroll. What I am trying to learn are the methods that will allow me to hang in there untill the cards turn my way, then be in a position to take my best shot.


    Unless you are believing in the mythical, magical, sacred FLOW of the cards, just playing basic strategy will reduce your losses compared to someone who does not play it, but will never put you into a position to take an educated shot. Only by counting and knowing that the remaining cards yet to be dealt will favor you, can you get to the position you wish to get to.

    ihate17
  • I get your point and it is well taken. I am just thinking that if you wager the same amount every time...you are looking at 50/50 and will never leave ahead. Of course I understand the need to double when called for, etc. It just seems there should be a method of wagering that will maximize the good runs. However, what you say does make a great deal of sense. Is the KISS counting method one that you would reccomend for beginners......or is there another one suitable for those wanting to learn?
  • dr3putt said:
    Thanks. I am presently using a $300 bankroll. What I am trying to learn are the methods that will allow me to hang in there untill the cards turn my way, then be in a position to take my best shot.


    If you don't count cards, then your best strategy includes any/all of the following:

    (1) play at the most crowded table you can find. This reduces the number of hands you play per hour which reduces the speed your bankroll dwindles.

    (2) flat-bet the table minimum. Raising your bet only speeds up your bankroll depletion.

    (3) play perfect basic strategy. This reduces the house advantage to the absolute minimum, which slows your bankroll drain.

    (4) the less you play, the slower your money will disappear. Take plenty of breaks to sight-see, visit the restroom, eat, get a soft-drink, etc.

    (5) decline _all_ alcoholic drinks while playing. They impair your judgement and erode your ability to play perfect basic strategy (see (3) ) above.

    There is _nothing_ you can do, money-management wise, to avoid losing your shirt. That's why the casinos offer the game of 21 in the first place. If you get tired of slowly losing (21 is the best card game in the house from the player's expected loss rate) then you can learn a card-counting system and turn the tables around completely, so that now you are expecting to slowly win, rather than lose.
  • dr3putt said:
    I get your point and it is well taken. I am just thinking that if you wager the same amount every time...you are looking at 50/50 and will never leave ahead. Of course I understand the need to double when called for, etc. It just seems there should be a method of wagering that will maximize the good runs. However, what you say does make a great deal of sense. Is the KISS counting method one that you would reccomend for beginners......or is there another one suitable for those wanting to learn?


    You can not find a workable method of wagering for good runs because you never know what will happen on the next hand. As a non counter you must take it for granted that you have a disadvantage on every single hand, as a counter you know when you should have an advantage on the next hand.
    What happens is you do have a lucky run and say to yourself something to the effect that if you had doubled your bet each hand while winning and reduced your bet on that hand that ended the streak, I would have won X amount. Well after you win the first hand, your chance of winning or losing the next hand remains just about the same and so on and so on. That is why there is no known progression that has ever worked on its own. Some will get you many winning sessions that get wipped out with one multi hand losing streak.
    By the way, if your mind is leading up to a progression, you stastically should get one losing streak of approximately 10 consecutive hands in every 20 hours of play. Personally, I have had 4 streaks of loses of over 20 hands in 30 years of playing blackjack. Just imagine how much money would have been lost if I raised my bet after a loss.

    Since the number one, most important rule in blackjack is that if you and the dealer both bust, you LOSE, the dealer will win about 48% of hands, you will win about 44% of hands and push the remaining 8%, so your chance at a long winning streak is smaller than your chance at a long losing streak. The house does not get a 3/2 bonus for blackjack, can not double and can not split. What cardcounting does is tell you when you have a better chance at getting a blackjack and when you should win a larger percentage of your doubles and splits, so you bet more then.

    I am not familar with Kiss and have heard it is simple but not that good of a system. Most new players use KO or hi-lo. Personally I use AO11 for single deck and hi-lo for double deck and six deck.

    ihate17
  • Thanks for your very thorough and complete explanation. It appears that I have my work cut out for me. Thanks again for your reply.
  • Thanks, Stainless Steel Rat. As I mentioned earlier it looks like I am going to learn card counting. Which countying systems would you reccomend for a novice? Thanks...
  • dr3putt said:
    Thanks, Stainless Steel Rat. As I mentioned earlier it looks like I am going to learn card counting. Which countying systems would you reccomend for a novice? Thanks...



    ihate17 gave you two good starting points. Some like KO because it is an unbalanced count and doesn't require a true-count conversion which some seem to dislike. Hi-Lo is the most popular counting system in use today. It is simple to use and will certainly "get the money" if you apply it with reasonable accuracy.

    The accuracy issue can be helped by buying CVBJ from www.qfit.com. This software will let you play against the computer, watching your every bet to make sure it is tracking the count properly, it will track every playing decision to make sure they match the basic strategy departure indices you choose to use. It will drill you to make counting a nearly automatic thing so that you are not constantly "thinking" about counting. Etc. Money well spent IMHO.

    As far as the hilo vs KO decision, you will have to try them on for size. There is a simple version of KO that is available on the net. Hi-Lo is well-documented and there is a "blackjack school" on the wizard of odd's web site that will teach you hi-lo pretty quickly if you get serious about it.

    Other counting systems also work well. KISS, Snyder's Red-7, etc. are all proven systems. There are better systems but they are significantly harder to use (The better the system, the harder it is to learn because more accuracy gives up a lot of the simplicity that makes HiLo/KO so attractive for most.)
  • Thanks for the info. I am going to proceed with my efforts to learn the hi-lo system. Thanks for the tip on the error checking software...will order it today. One last question. I note most folks refer to a 6 deck shoe. Is the hi-lo method adaptable to 7 or 8 deck shoes? As I mentioned earlier, most of the casinos in Arizona use these shoes.

    Again thank you for sharing your insight with me.
  • dr3putt said:
    Thanks for the info. I am going to proceed with my efforts to learn the hi-lo system. Thanks for the tip on the error checking software...will order it today. One last question. I note most folks refer to a 6 deck shoe. Is the hi-lo method adaptable to 7 or 8 deck shoes? As I mentioned earlier, most of the casinos in Arizona use these shoes.

    Again thank you for sharing your insight with me.



    Hi-Lo works with any number of decks. The issue is that the more decks you have in the shoe, the less frequently the count will swing positive enough to cause you to raise your bet. That means that lots of time is needed to produce a positive edge against the house. Just playing a few hands here and there won't cut it. You can also use the wong-in strategy (where you count without playing, and only sit down to play when the count swings positive, assuming the table is not full.) But the more decks used, the less you will "wong in" since the count won't go positive as frequently.

    SD/DD games can be soundly beaten with hi-lo. 6D can be beaten, but don't expect to sit down for an hour, play, and walk away up a couple of hundred bucks. I have played for an hour without a single positive count, for reference. In SD/DD games, the count swings up and down quickly because there are so few cards in play.
  • dr3putt said:
    Thanks. I am presently using a $300 bankroll. What I am trying to learn are the methods that will allow me to hang in there untill the cards turn my way, then be in a position to take my best shot.


    What exactly is your best shot? Your bank is just fine for a four hour session at a $5 table if you always flat bet five bucks. It is about $100 short for a $10 table. So.. what is your best strategy?

    Your best bet is to play perfect basic strategy at a $5 table and flat bet. There is no specific time for you to increase your bet other than what is required to adhere to basic strategy. Like doubles and splits,etc. Short of counting, you can further increase your chance by using basic strategy plus that Renzey describes in his book (board counting and/or comp hands). The very best suggestion that Renzey makes is the idea of hand interaction with other players and if you can add that, you'll give the casino a run for their money.

    None of this gives you the edge to win over the long run but it will reduce your loss or, at times, increase your chance to win.
  • Many APs are not aware that KISS comes in three models -- entry level, intermediate and full scale. The entry level KISS I is an abridged count structure, counting only half the cards. The handy part is that each version is directly upgradable to the next by simply adding one high and one low card to your structure if and when you feel ready.
    I feel this makes it a good way to gently break into "plus/minus" card counting. KISS I has only 66% of the EV of Hi/Lo, but KISS III has 97% (in the shoe game). Also, a couple of enhancements are illustrated near the back of Bluebook for KISS III that will push its EV to about 104% of Hi/Lo.

    A local player I know who was always "gun-shy" of card counting "tip-toed" into KISS I four years ago just to get a feel of it. He now uses KISS III with all the upgrades, plays 700 hours a year and has been quite successful.
  • If you want to get the most bang for your buck,do not flat bet the table minimum. Make a bet several times the table minimum right off the bat and then place two or three more equal bets. This will have the pitboss rate you as a 3X player. When he moves on,drop your bet to X. When he comes around,bump it back to 3X. The net effect is that you'll earn comps three times faster than your regular X bet will. You can do this safely by reducing the number of hands an hour you play. Play at full tables,take a bathroom break every thirty-forty minutes,and get up every 15-20 minutes for a smoke break.Even though I no longer smoke,I bring a pack to the table with me,and get up to "smoke" one away from the table.Don't hesitate to sit out a few hands when someone screws up the "flow" of the cards.
    While playing even perfect BS is a long-term net loser,playing it and adding comp counting will make you a net winner. A $50 flat bettor with perfect BS should lose about $20 an hour. But play four hours a day betting $50 a hand on a steady basis in most casinos and you'll get comps worth well more than that.
  • dr3putt said:
    Although I am a beginner and only play basic stratgey plus a few tips from the BLUEBOOK II, I am certain that Money Management plays a vital role in having success at the table.

    Any reccomendations for items that deal with Money Management for the $5 and 10 dollar player?

    Thanks.....

    the best money management that is out there is to bet more when you have edge. obviously for that you have to count. there is no other way around this mathematical fact. also you have to play some hands different of what basic strategy is when the condition of the deck have changed from neutral to +/-. playing only basic makes you a loser no matter what money management you use. you cannot manage your money and have a positive edge. money are managed by the condition of the deck. you bet more when you've got edge. if you don’t count you should not play. why not counting? - actually counting is fun and rewarding. learn how to count and bet more when casino lost the edge and you will play smart and profitable. just double the unit when you double the previous bank and you will be making lots of $$ with the same ROR all along.
  • AlexD30 said:
    the best money management that is out there is to bet more when you have edge. obviously for that you have to count. there is no other way around this mathematical fact. also you have to play some hands different of what basic strategy is when the condition of the deck have changed from neutral to +/-. playing only basic makes you a loser no matter what money management you use. you cannot manage your money and have a positive edge. money are managed by the condition of the deck. you bet more when you've got edge. if you don’t count you should not play. why not counting? - actually counting is fun and rewarding. learn how to count and bet more when casino lost the edge and you will play smart and profitable. just double the unit when you double the previous bank and you will be making lots of $$ with the same ROR all along.

    Excellent advice......point well taken. Thanks
  • Very definite food for thought. I believe I will travel this trail while learning how to count. Thanks for the informative reply.
  • Last message was for NYB. Thanks
  • dr3putt said:
    Last message was for NYB. Thanks


    Buy and read "Comp City" by Max Rubin. First off,its highly entertaining,and secondly-you'll learn everything there is to know about getting over on a BJ table without counting. Of course,its better to combine comp counting with actual card counting but until then.....
  • Hate to show my ignorance...but what is "comp counting" ? Thanks.
  • dr3putt said:Hate to show my ignorance...but what is "comp counting" ? Thanks.

    Comp Counting is when you count cards (either to give yourself an advantage or just break even with the house) while you are collecting comps for food, rooms, shows, etc. It is a way to get “free stuff” and maybe earn a little money as well.

    -Sonny-
  • In a nutshell-
    When you count cards,you place bigger bets when the cards are in your favor.
    When you comp count,you place bigger bets when the pitboss is observing you,and try to play less hands an hour.
    If you were to flatbet $10 a hand and play at a table with one other player,you'd play about 100 hands and thus your play would be about $1,000 an hour(100 hands x your $10 bet)
    Now if you sit at a full table,you'll play about 60 hands an hour,so if you bet $15 a hand,you really put less at risk(60 hands x$15=$900),yet you are being rated as a $15 player,not a $10.
    If you take a bathroom break every 45 minutes or so,get up from the table to smoke a cigarrette every half hour and occasionally sit out a hand because someone screwed up the flow of the cards,you can even get down to about forty hands. Now betting $25 a hand will give you almost the exact same risk as you had playing $10 a hand at the first table.The difference is that $25 a hand will get you many more comps than playing $10 a hand.
    $10 players get buffets and casino rates. $25 players get steak dinners and comped rooms.Getting your room comped for a few nites will negate your average expected losses.
    Of course,its not that cut and dry but thats the general idea.Read the book.
  • At some point you understand which casinos have a tolerance level for counters that you can use and which casinos have a no tolerance policy.

    You can pick one or two casinos that will not backoff a counter who plays at a certain level or one who plays at a higher level but does not spread enough. You then can find yourself with FRB or other comp situations at these places and still play a winning comp game for years.
    Cavets:
    If you do something that embarrases a pit or his supervisor, you might get tossed.
    If you suddenly start spreading much more you might get tossed.
    If someone new in table game management is hired, you might get tossed.
    If the casino is sold to a paranoid operator, you will get tossed.

    These situations except the first have all happened to me but in every case I had several years and even two decades in a place counting, getting comped and only giving up an amount of my EV that was much less than the comps.

    The more you know about your opponent, the better your chances of victory.

    ihate17
  • There is a trend, not growing that quickly, but a trend towards chips within chips. RFID technology and it has many benifits to a casino.
    Perhaps the biggest benifit is the recognition of counterfeit chips. For this reason many casinos already have placed RFID chips within high denomination chips. Counterfeit chips have been a big problem in Asia and I believe a Reno casino was hit about a year or so ago. In today's world, replicating a clay chip with special markings is a very easy thing to do.

    Another benifit of RFID, if the casino changes all their chips is player tracking. Casinos love slot customers because they know to the cent what they have bet if they use their slot card. On table games, the pit makes an estimate of your bet, estimates of the amount of hands you played and estimates often the amount of time (along with a rating of what kind of player you are). This is very inexact and must keep beancounters up at night. With RFID chips the casino will know, exactly what you bet on every single hand you played.
    Translation in casinoeese: Less Comps! No comps for sitting out a hand, no comps for bathroom breaks, no extra comps for playing at a full, very slow table. Just the comps you actually deserve and not a cent more.

    Finally, RFID can not catch a counter by itself but when combined with a program that tracks the cards, it is very useful.

    ihate17
  • It is my intent to learn the Hi-Lo system. Once I feel proficient and confident enough to venture to the casino, should I start out with SD, DD or the shoe games?

    Thanks.....
  • dr3putt said:
    It is my intent to learn the Hi-Lo system. Once I feel proficient and confident enough to venture to the casino, should I start out with SD, DD or the shoe games?

    Thanks.....


    First off, if the SD game you will be playing does not pay 3/2 for a blackjack, then forget it.
    It might be easier to maintain the count on a single or double deck game in the early stages but that is often offset because generally the cards are dealt down and this causes some confusion on seeing them. Definately in sngle or double deck you would not have to maintain a running count as long as you must in a shoe game.

    If you are most comfortable at a shoe or pitch game, that is the one you most likely should practice for. Before counting at a casino you should be counting down decks at home with real cards or computer programs. At some point counting becomes very easy and natural, but it takes a lot of practice.

    Once you have mastered a count, me or someone else here will explain that learning to count is the easy part of being a winner. The mental and emotional parts are often tougher.

    ihate17
  • ihate17 said:
    ...., The mental and emotional parts are often tougher.
    ihate17


    I totaly agree. The emotional part is often tougher

    Now, back to our junior member "dr3putt"

    The key to play a winning game is not technical. It’s not how to bet optimal or how to have a low ROR. The key of winning it’s not dependent on the effectiveness of your act or cover. All the above things are within reach. Practice makes perfect.

    The key of winning is the understanding that you got to have a big bank to absorb the flux and have the courage to push the big bets out when have the edge. To do all these thing you must understand the psychology of losing. You have to understand how fluctuations in your capital works. You have to understand what losing chips during the play stands for. You have to understand what losing is in relationship with your bankroll. Where have you start and where are you at the moment with respect to the number of chips available. This single ingredient is the major key of winning. A player who overcomes this becomes successful.

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!