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Why flat betting is not an option - Ellis

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Again the spectre of flat betting has raised its ugly head so I must reaffirm my objections.

I know of no system or player who has ever prevailed flat betting - either Baccarat or BJ - NONE in 30 years.

Yes we had that one player who did not believe this so he quit the forum to go off and flat bet. He posted his results back to us for a very short while and was then never heard from again. I suspect he learned his lesson.

The reason is very obvious:

To win flat betting you MUST defeat the game odds. You MUST win more than half the hands. Fine BUT if you won more than half the hands, you would have won more money with a progression. See that? The two cancel out, don't they.

Therefore the only time flat betting is better is when you are losing.

Or, said more succinctly, the only time flat betting is better is when you intend to lose. So why would you ever do it?

Let's take a VERY practical and VERY common example:

Suppose you play 20 plays and win every other bet: Well you precisely matched the game odds didn't you (50/50). You won half the hands.

If you were flat betting your score is 0.

If you were betting our simple 1,2 prog, your score is +10.

Need I go any further?

If you are winning your first bet the most often you are best off with a 345 per your NOR manual.

But if you are winning your second bet the most often, you are best off with a 1,2.

But you are NEVER better off flat betting unless you are mostly losing both your first and your 2nd bets. And in that case it is not the progression that's hurting you. You are obviously playing the wrong system.

So, you are NEVER better off flat betting unless you intend to lose.

There are no good arguments to the contrary.

End of story.

Oh, here is a completely different way to make the judgement once and for all:

Are you winning most of your 2 bets?

Every bet we make with our NOR or +5 systems has an advantage on EVERY bet EXCEPT our OTR bets, WHEN we are playing the right system in the first place. S40M1 even has an advantage on initial OTR bets.

Therefore, if you check your shoes you will quickly see that you are nearly always winning most of your 2 bets. If not, if you check you will see that you weren't playing the best system in the first place.

So, if you are winning most of your 2 bets, aren't you glad that they weren't 1 bets?

I rest my case.

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  • Baccarat Hall of Fame Member

I agree with everything above other than I will would add the caveat that flat betting 1 unit will allow you to confirm you have chosen the right system, and prevent the hemorrhage when you are just entering or already below -2. I have found this helps lower the number of losing shoes, especially when playing tired, tough tables, weekends, etc. All of which I often do.

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.  Figure out a way to win at baccarat that fits your lifestyle, you don't have to eat fish anymore!

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What percentage of hands do you actually win? (Regardless of whether it is 1unit, 2unit, 3unit etc. bet.)

I am only interested in the percentage. Does not have to be lifetime, a ball park figure

over the last six months or so would do just fine.

Thank you.

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  • 4 years later...
  • Users

I can win flat betting at blackjack and baccarat. For blackjack I would only play 8 deck shoe game and stick to stop wins and losses.

Stop win was 2 units...so if I happen to win first hand with BJ would stop with 1.5 win. Stop loss is 8 units


The stop loss wouldn't just always be 8.... another words if I was at minus 3 and got to minus 1 I would stop there



This way I would have a losses of 1 or 2 way more than 8... bringing average loss to under 2


My average win would be near average loss and I would win 75 of shoes played


I stop playing BJ because so many tables that used to BJ tables are now other games. So getting to 6 to 8 tables per hour was too difficult.


I learned about stop wins and losses per shoe from Target 21


I never used Target but I did use the stops and did learn about doing a casino walk through to access my conditions were present.


Non random shuffle is the reason stops work for blackjack



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  • Baccarat Hall of Fame Member

Hey, Stacks

EZ to make a case for flat betting, or a progression.

Biggest problem is that using a progression, almost everyone soon presumes they are Superman. Or, WonderWoman.

                               Might win the first few hands, maybe a few shoes...

                                              ( until they hit the wall) OUCHEE!

With flat betting, admittedly, you have to win more hands than you lose.

Not only do you have to understand how to play, you have to really, really, really must understand how....

                                                                   TO WIN.

Sounds like you are way beyond TheDiscoveryChannel, and the Yellow Brick Road....


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  • Users

If we flat bet or use progression or say levels of betting. We need to have stops ....the key to me is recognizing where to stop. I don't believe in an exact stop except for that point where it will be to costly to recoup in future shoes.


Something like getting down getting down 7 units and having a great recovery to minus 2


More importantly taking a 1 unit win instead of pushing for more and ending up losing 3 units


It's these swings that are important for the grind.



Nick. ( Stacks is an old handle from my bj21.com days)

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