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5 betting systems based on Labouchere

This is a deep and detailed study of the Labouchere roulette strategy that took its name from Englishman Henry Du Pré Labouchère.

In this page we will present the Main Labouchere method. This will be the basis that you should understand perfectly before going into the next chapters where we will explain interesting variations of the system. Here is a full table of contents of the various chapters of our Labouchere study, where we discuss and explain all kinds of different versions this versatile strategy.

For more roulette strategies, look at our main systems page, where 13 unique strategies are presented for you to study. Compare their requirements, their attributes, their advantages and disadvantages and choose the one that shows you the most promise or just fits your taste better.


  • Main Labouchere progression (the page you are reading now)
  • Explaining the basic idea and betting progression

  • Reverse Labouchere
  • The reverse approach to the main method. The bets increase when you win instead of when you lose.

LABOUCHERE or Labby or Cancellation or Cross-Out or…

This method uses a pen-and-paper accounting system. You need pen and paper for this one but that is OK with most casinos. Some will only let you use their score-cards but that doesn’t matter, as long as it is a piece of paper.

The LABOUCHERE system is (mainly) used for even chances betting (Red, Black, Even, Odd, Low, High) and found in numerous variations. Essentially it is used in this way:

Write some numbers down on your paper,a line like: 1 2 3 4
The sum of this (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 = 10) is your expected win for the session. A session can be 2 or more spins in length when having four figures on the line. The minimum number of spins are always half of the number of figures in the line (the larger half if odd).

Bet the first and the last figures of the line: 1 + 4 = 5
You lose (sorry). Because you lost, you note the value of your loss (5) at the right end of the line.
The line now looks like this: 1 2 3 4 5
Bet the first and the last figures: 1 + 5 = 6
Now you win! Because you won, you cross out (hence one of its many nick-names) the two figures you used for your bet: 1 and 5.
The line now looks like this: X 2 3 4 X
Bet the first and the last figures: 2 + 4 = 6
Lose. Note 6 at the right end: X 2 3 4 X 6
Bet 2 + 6 = 8
Lose, note loss: X 2 3 4 X 6 8
Bet 2 + 8 = 10
Win, x out: X X 3 4 X 6 X
Bet 3 + 6 = 9
Win, x out: X X X 4 X X X
Bet 4 (only left)
Lose, note: X X X 4 X X X 4
Bet 4 + 4 = 8 (first and last)
Win, x out: X X X X X X X X
Session end.

The bets were: 5 + 6 + 6 + 8 + 10 + 9 + 4 + 8 = 56 units, and the winnings were: 12 + 20 + 18 + 16 = 66. When subtracting bet units from won, there is a positive net of ten units. That is equal to the sum of the line, when started – exactly as expected. No matter the values or number of the figures in the line at start; the sum of them is what you will win when ALL figures are crossed out. The line “1 1 1” will give a net result of 3 units and the line “3 7 12 22 30” will give a net result of 74


So, what’s the down-side of this system, then?
A streak of alternating losses and wins, dominated by the losses, is devastating to this system. The result will be a very long line and/or very high bets – reaching a table-limit of 200 – 500 is easy – forcing you to, for example, “split” your line into two…
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(To split a line, you divide all values in the line, one by one, by 2 (and round up/down) thus getting two lines. For example: the line “48 69 98 147” is split into the lines “24 35 49 74” and “24 34 49 73”. Now you go on with one line and after that one is finished (if ever), you start the other one and finish it. Note that you have to finish both lines to get the expected win – the sum of the values in the starting line.)

Betting big bets means you have to have a large bank-roll. In the first example on this page, you were, after the fourth spin, down 13 units and the plan tells you to bet another ten – a total of 23 units down and on a loss you should bet another 12 etc. This means that, despite your initial values in the starting line, you have to have a big bank-roll to use this system. Or limiting your bets in one way or another. It is for the user to decide.

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