The Iron Cross Craps System in Mines Games On LuckyCola: Does It Work?
Unlike many educated gambling writers, I love gambling systems. Yes, I’m aware that they don’t change your odds of winning.
That doesn’t matter.
Having a systematic way to play a casino game just makes it more fun for me.
I’ve even used the Martingale System, and the world didn’t end.
In this post, I look at a popular craps system called “The Iron Cross.” Let’s explore how to use the Iron Cross system below.
How to Use the Iron Cross Craps System
The Iron Cross craps system is one of those gambling systems that covers almost every possible option on the table. You’ll rarely lose with such a system, but the size of your profits on most bets are going to be small. You’ll also eventually lose enough that the house edge will eat up your bankroll.
But how do you use the Iron Cross in craps specifically?
First, you place a bet on the field. This is a bet that wins if a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, or 12 gets rolled.
You also make a place wager on 5, 6, and 8.
The only time this combination of bets loses is if the shooter rolls a 7. When that happens, you’ll lose all the money you’ve bet.
But if any other number comes up before the 7, you profit.
How Does the Field Bet in Craps Work?
The field bet is an example of a one-roll bet. It either wins or loses based on the next roll, and it doesn’t matter if you place the field bet on the come-out roll or on a subsequent roll. It’s also a self-service bet. You place this type of bet yourself, although the dealers still handle the payouts.
The only losing numbers on a field bet are the 5, 6, 7, and 8.
The casino makes a profit on this bet because the odds of hitting those other totals are relatively low. You have a limited number (16) combinations that result in a winning number. You have 20 different combinations that result in a 5, 6, 7, or 8.
The payouts for the field bet depend on which number is rolled. If a 2 or 12 is rolled, you get 2 to 1 on your money. In some generous casinos, you might even get 3 to 1 when a 2 or 12 is rolled.
All the other numbers result in an even money payout.
The field bet in craps, like almost every other bet in the casino, gives the house a mathematical edge. Most of the time, this edge is 5.56%. If you’re at a casino with the 3 to 1 payouts, the edge is only 2.78%.
I should mention that the house edge for the pass line bet is significantly lower at 1.41%, by the way.
How Do Place Bets Work?
You can make a place bet on the numbers 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10 whenever you want to. To make a place bet, you put the chips in front of you and tell the dealer you want to make a place bet on the number you choose. The place bet is NOT a self-service bet.
Unlike the field, the place bet is a multi-roll bet. It stays in action until the number you placed is rolled or until the shooter rolls a 7. If the shooter rolls the place number before a 7, your bet wins. And if the shooter rolls a 7 first, the bet loses.
When you win such a bet, the dealer pays you off, but he keeps your original place bet in action unless you tell him you want to take the bet down. Also, the place bets are usually turned off for the come-out roll, but you can tell the dealer you want to keep that bet working even then.
A place bet pays off based on the number, as follows:
- Place 4 or Place 10 pays off at 9 to 5 odds
- Place 5 or Place 9 pays off at 7 to 5 odds
- Place 6 or Place 8 pays off at 7 to 6 odds
The house edge varies based on the number, too. The house edge is lowest (1.52%) on the 6 or the 8, but it goes up to 4% on the 5 or 9. The biggest edge is on a 4 or 10 at 6.67%.
If you’re using the Iron Cross system, you’re only making a place wager on 5, 6, and 8.
The Iron Cross System Doesn’t Lower the House Edge
If you’ve read much of my writing before this, you probably already realize that combining negative expectation bets never results in a positive expectation. It’s like adding negative numbers together. It doesn’t matter what size those numbers are, your eventual outcome is always negative.
That doesn’t mean this system isn’t fun to play.
What makes it fun?
The place bets.
Real money craps is a notoriously streaky game, and shooters often go on streaks where they don’t roll a 7 for a long time. When this happens, you’ll be getting even-money payouts on your field bet repeatedly, and you’ll also often be getting slightly bigger payouts on numbers (the place number bets) that stay in action and keep hitting.
And you get all this action with a minimal amount of effort on your part.
How to Have Even More Fun With the Iron Cross System
I’ve already established that you’ll go on repeated streaks where you get a win on every roll of the dice, and the winnings will seem to pile up. Of course, a couple of 7s in a row, and you’ll see those winnings start to wash away.
But you can have even more fun with the Iron Cross system by occasionally pressing your bets.
In other words, when you win, you leave your winnings on the table and increase the size of your bet.
You can set any kind of arbitrary limit to how many times you’ll press your bets, but 3 is a common number. The nice thing about pressing your bet and winning 3 times in a row is that you’ll win a significant amount of money.
Let’s look at an example:
You bet $10 on the field and win. You leave the $10 on the table along with your winnings, so you’re now betting $20. You win again, and now, you have $40 in action. When and if you win your last bet, you get $80 for your trouble, which is a great return on a $10 bet.
When you start pressing your bets on the place bets, you stand to see even bigger numbers because you’re getting more than even money on each bet.
Some Gamblers Like to Play “With the House’s Money”
Another variation of the press your bet idea is to win the field bet two or three times in a row, then you take your original bet off the table. At this point, the idea is that you’re now playing with the casino’s money.
This is an interesting way to look at it. After all, you’re betting profits that you made from your time playing in the casino up to that point.
But at the same time, any money you’ve won is YOUR money, not the casino’s.
The house edge doesn’t care. It’s like a force of nature. It accounts for the fact that you’re playing “with the casino’s money.”
An Alternative to the Iron Cross System
Here’s my suggested alternative to the Iron Cross:
Bet the pass line on the come-out roll. Then take maximum odds on that bet when a point gets thrown.
Also, make a come bet on subsequent rolls until you have four bets working at the same time on the table.
You’ll be dealing with a lower house edge, and you’ll still be seeing plenty of wins because you have so many bets in action.
One thing to keep in mind with this alternative or with the Iron Cross is that you should keep your bet sizes low. It’s easy to go broke fast at the craps table when you get a lot of different bets on the table. The only way to avoid this is to keep the sizes of those bets low.
That’s basically everything you need to know to use the Iron Cross system at the craps table.
Does the Iron Cross system work?
If you define success as overcoming the house edge and getting one over on the casino, the answer, sadly, is no.
But if your idea of success is to have fun as an action player and seeing lots of small-ish winning streaks, the Iron Cross is as good as any other craps system and better than most.