How long is a piece of string?
That might be your response to how many times a roulette wheel spins on any given turn, because surely it just spins until it stops?
Not so much, as it turns out.
There isn’t a single, simple answer here (though, on average, the ball tends to spin 27 to 30 times on the wheel) but it’s actually part of a much bigger question: how fast are roulette wheels spun and how consistent is this across different casinos.
Slow or Fast?
The biggest question here is do casinos prefer the croupier to spin their roulette wheels fast or slow. You might think that casinos prefer the wheels to be spun as fast as it can without the ball flying off, in order to prevent players from being able to watch how the ball interacts with the numbers and then betting accordingly after a few rounds.
Actually, though, spinning the wheel slowly (roughly 3 or 4 seconds per revolution) gives the player the illusion that they can predict where the ball will land and will keep them coming back for more. In truth, though, roulette is always a game of complete chance as it’s impossible to predict where and how the ball will land no matter how many times you watch it go around.
Needless to say, there is no consistency of how fast the wheel is spun from casino to casino – even if, again, the general rule is that it’s spun at roughly 4 seconds per revolution – because that level of control is all but impossible. But what about the same wheel at the same casino spun by the same croupier?
This probably does depend on the casino but, again, while you might expect all casinos to expect their croupiers to spin the wheel at vastly different speeds or to even change the croupiers very often, this really isn’t necessary. Even the best maintained wheel on the planet will never act the same way even if the croupier tries to spin it at exactly the right speed or even from the same position – the tiniest, most invisible change from one spin to the next will result in the ball landing on completely different locations to the last spin.
And because it’s spun by a human being, this will always, always be the case.
In fact, if you do see a roulette wheel behaving exactly the same way over and over again, it’s probably rigged and you should pack up your things and leave that casino as quickly as you possibly can!