Open Archive 6
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Next step in learning to count?
Posted by Dug on 13 August 1999, at 5:23 p.m.
Let me explain where I am and that will explain the title. I go to Vegas for a long weekend every year with a bunch of college friends. I'm not a high roller -- I typically flat bet $3 or $5 tables and at most, I'll lose about $300 over the weekend. I've been using basic strategy for the past 3 years and that has definitely cut my losses.
After last time, I decided that the casinos had extracted too much of my money and I needed to learn to count. I bought and read some books -- Uston's Million Dollar Blackjack, Vancura's/Fuchs' K-O Blackjack, Wong's Professional Blackjack, and Scoblete's Best Blackjack.
I decided that for me, the KO system was the best combination of simplicity vs. power. I can count down a deck in almost 30 seconds. I've used different starting counts so I get practice counting very positive and very negative numbers. I've sat on the floor, dealt myself and the "dealer" hands, and practiced counting, playing, and betting correctly.
I feel I've done my homework well up to this point. The next step is to do this in a real casino with real money and now I'm starting to get nervous.
What's the best way to "break into" counting in the casino environment? I've thought about going to a local casino (Seattle area) and flat betting $5 while I practice counting and strategy changes in the casino environment. Would any of you recommend this as a logical next step, or should I just jump in and start counting and varying my bet all at once?
I guess what it boils down to is this: if I remember correctly, I need 300 - 500 units to get a 5% risk of ruin with a 5:1 bet spread. Even at 1 unit = $5, that's a lot of money (for me). I have the money, but would prefer not to risk it until I am 100% confident in my abilities.
The next Vegas trip is set for the weekend of October 23 so I've still got time to practice.
If you've read this far, thank you, and I'd appreciate any responses.
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