How to solve the 3x3x4 Cube

The 3x3x4 Cube is a normal Rubik's cube with an extra layer. Similarl to the Domino Cube, the Up and Down faces can turn 90° but the rest of the faces (i.e. Left, Right, Front and Back faces) can only turn 180° at a time (if you're not sure why, try turning the Right face 90° and see if you can move any other faces!). Its solution isn't similar to either the Rubik's cube or the Rubik's revenge despite its similar dimensions. Read on to find out how to solve the 3x3x4 cube!

Notation

Notation Part 1 Part 2


Front face of the 3x3x4 cube

F = Front

Back face of the 3x3x4 cube

B = Back

Left face of the 3x3x4 cube

L = Left

Right face of the 3x3x4 cube

R = Right

Up face of the 3x3x4 cube

U = Up

Down face of the 3x3x4 cube

D = Down

The following is new notation different from the normal cube notation thanks to the extra layers:

Middle up face of the 3x3x4 cube

u = up

Middle down face of the 3x3x4 cube

d = down

Part 1

Notation Part 1 Part 2


Step 1

The first step to solve the 3x3x4 cube is correctly placing the edge pieces in one of the middle two layers.

Aim of step 1 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Aim

The first three edge pieces of the layer can be done intuitively. If you're lucky the fourth edge piece will also fall into place but if not to swap the front-right-top piece with the front-right-bottom piece, marked by an X each, do the following

Algorithm of step 1 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: F (Dd) F (Dd)' F

Step 2

Step 2 is to solve the edge pieces in the other middle layer.

Aim of step 2 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Aim

Solve the edge pieces in the other middle layer. To swap two pieces in the same layer, marked by an X each, arrange as follows. This diagram is a view from the back, so you will need to arrange it like this and then turn it round before performing the algorithm!

Algorithm 1/2 of step 2 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: R F (Dd)' F (Dd) R (Dd)' F (Dd) R (Dd)'

In order to swap two middle edges (i.e. swap the two X pieces with each other and the two Y pieces with each other) then use the following algorithm:

Algorithm 2/2 of step 2 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: (Uu)2 R F u2 F R (Uu)2

Step 3

The next step is to solve the centres.

Aim of step 3 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Aim

If you have two of the same colour centre pieces in one layer, then use the following algorithm to move it from the bottom left to the upper right, marked with an X each, or vice versa.

Algorithm 1/3 of step 3 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: R (Dd)2 F (Dd)2 F (Dd)2 F R

In order to swap the pieces marked with an X, i.e. the front-bottom centre piece with the right-bottom centre piece, perform this algorithm:

Algorithm 2/3 of step 3 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: F (Uu)' F (Uu)2 R F (Uu)2 F R (Uu)' F

To swap the bottom-front and bottom-back centre pieces, again marked with an X, use the following: (note this is a view of the left face, before using the algorithm make sure you turn your cuboid).

Algorithm 3/3 of step 3 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: R (Dd)2 R (Dd)2 R (Dd)2

Part 2

Notation Part 1 Part 2


Step 4

Now to place the corners onto the correct face. This can be done through intuition alone.

Aim of step 4 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Aim

Then you need to move them into their correct positions. Use the below algorithm to swap the two corners in the bottom back marked with an X each.

Algorithm of step 4 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: R F D' F D R D' F U F U'

Step 5

The final step to solve the 3x3x4 cube is to place the edge piece on the up and bottom layers.

Aim of step 5 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Aim

Firstly, get them into the correct layer, you can swap the bottom left and upper left edges (marked with an X) using this:

Algorithm o1/3 of step 5 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: R D2 F D2 F D2 F R U2 R D2 F D2 F D2 F R

The final part is to rotate the edge pieces into their correct positions. You can swap the bottom-back and bottom-front edge pieces with the following algorithm. The diagram shows the left face, twist your cube into the correct position first.

Algorithm 2/3 of step 5 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: R D2 R D2 R D2

The following algorithm will swap the bottom-front and bottom-right edge pieces (marked with Xs):

Algorithm 3/3 of step 5 of how to solve the 3x3x4 cube

Algorithm: F U' F U2 R F U2 F R U' F

Tweet your success!

Search Rubik's Puzzles: