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I returned last night after a battle with my local Indian Casino here in Ca. I have been using an 7 -step neg. progression to play BJ with an 8 deck King auto Shuffler.

To qualify the table for play, I stood back and watched the dealer.... if the dealer busted once in 3 hands , I played.

I see where Mad Dog is counting how many 17/18/19/20 and bust hands the dealer has before sitting down. That seems it would be better than what I have been doing ?

While playing, and doing "OK" ... a big high limit player came to our red-chip table.... WOW ! ... YOU COULD CUT THE BLACK CLOUD OVER HIS HEAD WITH A KNIFE !

He had lost super-big in the high limit BJ area and it showed. When he bought in the table players winning - hands disappeared ! He emptied the table.

A young gal who had been fighting with a rude dealer can to our table later on and vented about her dealer problem.... PRESTO ! .... EVERYONE LOST/LOST/LOST !

Do you all see stuff like that where you play ?

Thoughts ?


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Hi Jim, It's perfectly OK to note to the guys here that I have taken you under my wing. Guys, Jim has not yet begun his NBJ WCB studies but is about to.

Jim, As you will learn, BJ is extremely sensitive to player number. An entering player will often turn a good game bad. But he can just as easily turn a bad game good. The key word here is "often". Note that I did not say always. What we are witnessing here is a general phenomenon created by what we call cycle bias.

We have been known to exploit this phenomenon. Two players leaving a bad game will "usually" turn it good. Sometimes we use a team to exploit that phenomenon.

Guys, I'll be working with Jim here, to target a specific game at that same Indian casino. It's a green, 8 deck, hand shuffled game. As most of you know, that is precisely my favorite cup of tea.

Since Jim is a new player, I'm thinking the best approach here is First Base, Tripoint. That will automate play as much as possible while reducing the need for correct play study. We, of course, will need to teach Jim how to qualify First Base opportunities and how to schedule his play to best find those opportunities.

I know that Jim's long progression up there probably raised some eyebrows. But Jim, at least for now, is sold on that progression. Rather than attempt to disuade him from that, I'm thinking this. The higher your hands won rate the less dangerous a long prog becomes. If Jim flat bets at table min on the low bet signals and continues his prog only on high bet signals.....

In other words, he would interupt his prog to make table min. bets on low bet signals and only continue his prog on high bet signals. This would mean that a 7 bet prog would actually last for about 20 hands on avg. In yet other words, his prog would be restricted to only cream of the crop hands. I don't recall ever losing anywhere near 7 high bet hands in a row in a well qualified first base game????? In fact, I don't think I've ever lost 3 high bets in a row.

This means that the emphasis must be on GOOD table selection and trip scheduling. This will be a high dollar experiment but I'd rather risk high dollars in the better green game than low dollars in the lesser red shuffle machine games. I'd like your comments. I wish one of you guys could be there to confirm table selection???

I'm thinking that Jim should at first restrict his prog to 3 bets at the outset to build bankroll. If he can do that successfully then perhaps he will see that more than 3 bets is an unnecessary risk.

Jim has enjoyed some success with his 7 bet prog in Baccarat where your odds of winning are ALWAYS 50-50 each hand. I would peg his odds in First Base High bet only hands at more like 55-45 or maybe a little better in a good game. I do not think the 7 bet decision (or even a 4 bet decision) should ever be made before a game. It should be made only during a game that has already proven itself. Remember, you only have to be wrong once.

I fully recognize Jim's choice of red games is primarily due to being able to fit his prog into the table stakes. But Jim lacks the experience to know how much easier it is to beat green 8 deck hand shuffled games. I'm thinking that once Jim sees the power of a 1,4,6 on the high bets only in that green game that he will arrive at the conclusion that a steeper 3 bet prog produces more profit at less risk than a shallower 7 bet prog. Also a 3 bet prog in a green game is more affordable than a 7 bet prog in a red game. The fact is that you can afford to lose that third bet more often than you think and still win. When you lose a 7 bet prog its good night Irene.

I don't know Jims prog precisely but I'll guess his seventh bet in a nickel game is about 34 nickels or $170 while even at 146 in a green game your 3rd bet is $150. At 146 a prog loss is 11 units. A 7 bet fib prog loss is 85 units. Hmmm. If you lose 7 bets in a row with a 146 you're talking only 23 units. But along the way the 146 is making money much faster than a 1 3 5 8 13 21 34. That is true at equal units. But realistically if you compare a red Fib to a green 146 its no contest. I wonder which Silverthorn is playing these days?

Guys, this is important! What are your comments?

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Guest CarlosM

Jim. Here in Ontario, Canada where I play, they also use 8 decks hand shuffled. They use machines also. In the $100 tables, they use 6 decks and in the $25 tables and lower, they use 8 deck hand shuffled and some tables machines. Could you tell me in excact detail, the wash they use, shuffle used after the wash, shuffle used after every round ends, plugging.

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I like the idea of playing the progression only in the "cream of the crop" hands. I think almost any neg prog will do well under those circumstances. I do like the 1-4-6. If it is a quarter game, then you need to have some torque. You could bet $25 for the regular hands, and then $100-$400-$600 negative progression for the "cream of the crop" hands.

I use the Fibonacci also to increase the stakes each time I have doubled my in-play chips. I have written about this at length on the board.

Don't forget to hit on those low bets. It'll help you break even on the low bets while you make out on the high bets.

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Yes, I'm talking a 1 3 5 8 13 21 34. I think thats close to what Silverthorn teaches. Jim got it from Silverthorn. A true Fib would be 1 1 2 3 5 8 13 21 34.

Yeah, I had forgotten about your use of the Fib. So it wouldn't be the first time a Fib was used in some way in BJ. Right on.

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Well I use Fibonacci as an up as you win kind of thing, not an up as you lose. I use 1-4-6 negative with my pile of twelve in play, until my pile doubles. Then I use Fibonacci to raise the stakes, and return to 1-4-6 to try to double the in-play amount again. Fibonacci is really ideal for taking profit in a situation where you don't know when the thing will end.

I have had people remark at how I am able to stay at a table for so long. I really think the 1-4-6 combined with Fibonacci is the right combo to match my card play skill level.

Money management in general is not a hard and fast thing. There is a lot of room for personal style. BUT, the 1-4-6 is not just money management. It is used to exploit a back and forth win loss cycle that is present in some games. We use it when we are not losing 3 in a row. We use it to find the tens in the deck. It is NOT just money management.

The Fibonacci at the higher level IS just money management. If you want to just grind out piles of 12 and not raise the stakes, be my guest. You'll probably live longer. Come to think of it, you'll live longer if you take up gardening.

Up as you win Fibonacci will stand your hair on end. This thing really takes off in a good game. The thing that's cool about it is that when you are making the big bets you know you've already made a profit, and the money you are pushing out is the casino's money. This style of play is not for gardeners.

Mad Dog

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I am sick with a cold ...so... quickie post.

Thank you for your replies. The BJ table I was playing at last week was at Eagle Mt. Casino out of Porterville, Ca.

They have a 6 deck hand shuffled shoe. I was watching the gal shuffle the cards and she stopped and said ... " Are you watching me shuffle ? " .... Wow ! hummmmm ?

She was breaking the played cards into two piles and making 6 piles of cards ...shuffling in 2 of of the 6 stacks, together , at a time and then bringing up the right hand and stack- feathering the cards over the left pile.

She would plug the shuffled pile in 3 plugs...... I need to go back with a digital recorder to be correct on this proceedures.

While playing the King auto machine, I kept getting the same cards ... two 4's and the dealer would get his 8 ....hummm ?

I have not played at my local Indian Casino 8- deck game. I was up on the 5.00 BJ King shuffler game and went into high limit for a re-con trip ...the other night.

The pit boss kid said.... '"DO NOT PLAY HERE TONIGHT , THE TABLES ARE KILLING EVERYONE ! " Boy, that was true.... Zero players and 5 dealers just staring at the walls .... I went home.

thoughts ?


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Hi all,

Just wanted to mention a classic move: I just got back from the taj in AC, playing green, sittting at short stop, 4 player game everybody playing BS, after 3 rounds someone says "where's all the tens?", i can't stop laughing inside, dealer has a 6 up, I have a 10-2 for 12 and the only ten on the table, two hit cards before me are low and everyone stands stiff, the dealer read is strong, without hesitation I signal hit, 3rd base player is playing black and yells "no!" and the dealer hesitates, I say "I said hit" and the dealer hits me, I catch a 6 for 18, dealer turns over 7, hits 3, 6 and breaks and 3rd base looks at me with amazement and appreciation and I say "yes?" but I think to myself "thanks Ellis".

Thanks Ellis.

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