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BC's TST CL Combine


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BC's TST CL Combine

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  #1 (permalink)
 abctrading 
Long Beach, CA
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: MotiveWave, NT7, NT8
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Hello,



Getting ready to start a combine with Top Step Trader on Monday January 13th and
wanted to get this journal and thread up and running. I will be doing the 10 Day - $50k combine
where we can trade up to 5 cars, daily loss of $1,000 and a Profit Target of $3,500.



I also will be posting my Trade Plan and CL strategy either tonight or tomorrow
and will also be posting my trades during this combine.




I will try to keep posts brief yet at the same time be informative of my entries
as well as what the "voices" are whispering in my ear
during the trading day. (yes .. I hear voices ... )



This will actually be my 3rd combine attempt during the last 2 years ..
the previous were blown out, mostly due to operator error with that blasted T4 platform
that was available. I hated that platform so much that I discovered a strategy
to help me conquer that DOM and kick it's to the curb .
Fortunately, TST recently announced that Ninja is once again available
to trade with and I won't have to get beat up by that DOM again. Whew!



Again, in an attempt to keep things short quick and easy to follow .. and not bang out novels everyday .. i will keep my postings short.
That being said, I will be posting my trade plan, strategy and pics in a few following posts,
over the next few days before I start this combine on Monday.


Thanks in advance for following along if you dare or care ... and thanks for any comments you might be willing to share.



Brian (bc)

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  #3 (permalink)
 abctrading 
Long Beach, CA
 
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Ok so .... as promised, here is my trade plan along with pictures of the
actual "Set-Up" that I am looking for while trading in this combine.


I am using several indicators to help me put the market into context,
and will try to describe some of that in the next few posts hopefully
before Monday rolls around. I have a semi busy weekend but will try to
do the best I can to post more


Have a great weekend! I will


bc

.

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nemeis45
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Hey good luck for the combine.
i have also just started a 20 day combine with tst.

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 abctrading 
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So just got a call and have an opportunity to work on a tv or movie show driving a boat for the next 2 maybe 3 days. So I will be stalling out on starting this combine until Wednesday or Thursday. You see .... working these shows equals some easy cash in the pocket, and hey .. we are expecting some great weather the next few days here in So Cal. ... might as well get paid to sit on a boat and have some fun :-)

I will post some pics if there any worthy of taking .. or posting ... lol.

bc

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 abctrading 
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Okay so back from working a few 14+ hour days on the water doing a TV show. I was driving boats for them, stuff like camera boats, support boat, S/FX boats, water safety, general transportation to and from set to base camp. We had great weather especially for January. We are dubbing this month now as June-uary gotta go make the guaranteed money when you can eh??!!

Here area few pics of the flotilla of boats rafted up together and listening to the director give instruction , another of the camera boats with a techno crane on it that has a camera on the end of it, and a few of the picture boats.

Enjoy .... and then it's back to this comibne .. .let's get this thing rolling!!

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 abctrading 
Long Beach, CA
 
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So back to trading this combine ..... I didn't get home from working until 3:30 am Thrusday morning ... so I decided to sleep and not push it by trying to trade really tired.

Friday was day #1 for me.

I never really got any of my signals to enter into a trade. I saw a few places I would liked to have entered but they were not laid out in my plan for this combine. Hate to watch them go by . but yay for me on sticking to my plan!! I did recieve a few signals and or patterns to enter, but when putting price action and bigger time frames into context I decided it was best to sit back and wait for a better opportunity. i was also kinda sketchy about how volume had switched to the March contract and figured things might be a bit squirrelly ... not to mention Monday is a Holiday ... would the big boys be bailing out early to get a jump on a 3 day weekend? Glad I did sit out as I would have had 2 losers right off the bat. Context .... so important with this trading stuff.

So Friday ended up with zero trades for me. I am ok with that. I remember hearing a quote that was something like this " It is better to not be in a trade wishing you were .... than to be in a trade wishing you were not!"

Might sit Monday out with he combine as it is a holiday .. but will wait and see how it looks and decide as it is happening.

Here is a pic of yesterday Friday at the end of the day with some notes of why I sat out and never pulled the trigger.

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 abctrading 
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Due to the Holiday, I sat out another day .... wow, I am really chomping at the bit here now to get this combine started. Tomorrow Tuesday should be the day barring anything crazy between now and the pit open.

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WillSmithRules
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Are there many traders on bigmiketrading who have passed the combine and are actively trading still? I would like to try a combine, but I want to make sure that there are some funded traders who have passed and who are still making money with tst. Any insight?

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 trendwaves 
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Are there many traders on bigmiketrading who have passed the combine and are actively trading still? I would like to try a combine, but I want to make sure that there are some funded traders who have passed and who are still making money with tst. Any insight?

Here is the list of futures.io (formerly BMT) member traders that have passed the combine.

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 trendwaves 
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Best of luck on your combine !

Just a quick question on your trading plan. What is the criteria you are using to know when to move from phase 1 to phase 2, and likewise phase 2 to phase 3 ?

I only ask this because that 10 days is not much time to work with, and starting out at 2 contracts your going to have to ramp up the position size pretty quickly before you run out of time.

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 abctrading 
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Best of luck on your combine !

Just a quick question on your trading plan. What is the criteria you are using to know when to move from phase 1 to phase 2, and likewise phase 2 to phase 3 ?

I only ask this because that 10 days is not much time to work with, and starting out at 2 contracts your going to have to ramp up the position size pretty quickly before you run out of time.


Thanks for the question :-)

I will move from phase 1 to phase 2 once I have a +$1,000 balance ($51k). Then from phase 2 to phase 3 once I have a +$2,500 balance ($52,500).

I "could" start trading phase 2 on my 5th trade. This "could" be as soon as day 1-3 .. all depends on how many set ups I see happen. As long as I can hit 2-3 winners a day, the averages should get me through the combine.

My thoughts are to get started and create a little pillow before adding some extra size. This should also help me stay on the green side of opening balance, for at least a rollover. Also, starting with 2 cars I could technically take 3 days of (3) close to full max stop losers in a row and still not blow out. (It is rare with this pattern/set up to have to use the full 25 tick stop .. it is usually around 15 ticks). Btw, I stop for the day if I get 3 strikes in a row.

Hope that answers your questions on that . and maybe then some

bc

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 trendwaves 
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Makes perfect sense. I like your trading plan, simple and to the point.

Hopefully you caught some of this morning volatility. Some great trade setups.

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 abctrading 
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So I attempted to start this darn combine today .. but ran into some technical issues. I will try to explain them here in hopes that it will help anybody else starting a TST combine that is using Ninja as a platform. It seemed like the folks over at Top Step had not seen this happen yet, so they were not able to really help except to suggest trying Ninja support.



Here is what happened:


I tried to get short with 2 as I saw my set up and pattern forming, but when trying to set my entry I got this error message saying I had insufficient TT credits to complete the trade. (see pics #1 and 2)

This was quite the bummer as this was my first trade of this new combine and it would have been a winner. (see pic #3)

So I sent Ninja an email and got the following response to my question of "But why would I get charged a TT fee when the combine is still in reality a SIM trade? Not to mention I was using the Chart Trader and not the Static Super DOM?" (see Pics #4 and 5)

While I was waiting for Ninja to respond to my question, I had a friend tell me that he has seen this before and gave me this link Enable/Disable Static SuperDOM Request that gives us an option to Disable the Static Super DOM. So I am still waiting to hear back from Ninja on this enabling/disabling feature and will update this post once I get it all sorted out.

I should be back up and running for tomorrow


ok so update on Ninja and Static Super DOM stuff:

According to Ninja .. and my interpretation of what they were telling me is that the Static Super DOM looks at every trade as if it were a rel transaction ... regardles of SIM or LIVE . and this is why TT credits would be required to trade with Vision Financial (the Top Step Data/Broker)

The two ways to deal with this is to 1) buy credits to trade with the Static Super DOM or 2) disable the Static Super DOM and just use the chart trader or dynamic DOM options. The only thing really missing with this option is we would no longer be able to utilize the market depth feature that is seen on the Static Super DOM. For me this is not a big deal as I do not really look at that info.

As usual, the folks at Ninja Trader were great and very helpful in helping sort through this!

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 trendwaves 
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I think what is happening is NinjaTrader is only going to recognize an order going to the Ninja Sim101 account as a Sim trade, so from NinjaTrader's perspective your trade looks like it is going to a live trade account at TST. On the TST server side, your order is then routed to your combine account, which from TST's perspective is a Sim account, but NinjaTrader is unaware of this distinction being made by TST and thus applies the TT credit policy to the TST order being sent.

I would suggest, unless you absolutely need the Static DOM, to disable TT credit policy for your license. Then you can place and manage trades without having to think about TT Credits. By doing this, you will lose the Static DOM capability, other than the Static DOM being disabled the rest of NinjaTrader will function normally.

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 Daytrader999 
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@abctrading & @trendwaves:

Since I'm currently in a Combine as well but didn't take a trade yet, this information has been very helpful in order to avoid such an irritating situation while entering a trade.

So as a consequence, I'll ask NT support to disable my Static Super Dom as well.

Thanks a lot for sharing your experiences !

And BTW, best of luck on your Combine, hope you'll make it !

"If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll fall into someone else's plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much." - Jim Rohn
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 patidar 
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@abctrading the colored band cyan,blue etc are the mk supplydemand indicator? or something else.

(jtrangemarker)?


Like your setups btw...all the best!

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 Daytrader999 
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@abctrading:

Since I can only find the website for purchasing TT credits, do you mind providing the link for disabling the Static Super DOM, or would it be necessary to contact NT support ?

"If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll fall into someone else's plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much." - Jim Rohn
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 trendwaves 
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@abctrading:

Since I can only find the website for purchasing TT credits, do you mind providing the link for disabling the Static Super DOM, or would it be necessary to contact NT support ?

Enable/Disable Static SuperDOM Request

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 Daytrader999 
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@trendwaves:

Great, thanks a bunch !

Edit: My license has just been converted by NT support, great service...

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 abctrading 
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@abctrading the colored band cyan,blue etc are the mk supplydemand indicator? or something else.

The cyan colored bands or zones are created with an indicator called APA Zones, " apazones.com" they print out support/resistance or supply/demand .... whatever you want to call it. The zones once created actually keep track of how many times price has visited or hit that zone and will change colors each time that zone has been hit. This is by far my favorite indicator as it helps me identify these areas very quickly. It is so nice to not have to draw my zones every morning as well as having to keep track of how many times price has bounced there. Maybe not a big deal if trading one market, but if looking at multiple markets and multiple time frames .. wow, what a time saver :-)

Another thing that APAZones does is it will print out these arrows that show where these 3 Bar Engulfing Patterns occurred. Makes it easy to go back and see where they happened.

I will post some pics here soon of what the different colors represent and how they keep track of bounce counts. etc.



Quoting 
jtrangemarker)?

The jtrangemarker indy (can be found here within futures.io (formerly BMT) as well as Ninja Forums) is very helpful for me in seeing where price will close based on what the current hi and or low is of that current range bar. This helps me identify whether or not this pattern that I am looking for is going to happen so that I can either set my entry, or pull it, if the pattern does not show itself as an "Engulfing" type of pattern that I explained at the beginning of this thread. If you would like more clarification on that, let me know and I can try to explain that more.


Quoting 
Like your setups btw...all the best!

Thank you and best of luck to you as well. Do you have a journal going here too? are you in a 10 or 20 day?

Let me know if you would like any more clarification


bc

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 abctrading 
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@abctrading:

Since I can only find the website for purchasing TT credits, do you mind providing the link for disabling the Static Super DOM, or would it be necessary to contact NT support ?

no problem .. try this link Enable/Disable Static SuperDOM Request

haha ... woops ... Trendwaves beat me to the link post .. nice and thanks Trendwave

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 abctrading 
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So I was finally able to start this TST Combine today!

However I did not start the way I had envisioned (green ) instead, I was in the red a bit........ As I am putting this post together, I prolly won't make any more trades, although I am watching for something that looks worthy of taking.

The breakdown looks something like this. Try and follow along with the pics below. (btw .. what is a good picture hosting site so that I can upload and insert pics into these posts and not have to have all the pics loaded down at the bottom of the post? thx. )

i passed on the 1st signal as it was a long right into the globex high. Usually not a good trade. I did take the 2nd signal which was a little above the globex hi and entered short with 2 cars. I ended up getting stopped out for -14 ticks. Actually had a 1 tick slip in my favor. Even though I got stopped out, price never would have hit my target of 15 ticks .... price came up short of my T1 target by one tick.

Passed on the 3rd signal as it was a short signal right into a trend line and the globex hi level and was perhaps a retest or bounce off that globex level. Was becoming obvious that we are in an uptrend and the risk/reward in a countertrend trade was just not good enough. I also was again trying to manage risk within this combine. A sketchy trade with an out balance R/R ratio did not feel good after already being red for the day.

I did take the 4th signal long, but ended up moving my stop to b/e after price was in my favor by 10 ticks. ( I wanted to be safe and protect the combine acct just in case this move was a head fake and just a retest of the recent high ) I got stopped out and slipped up 1 tick for a +1 tick profit. Of course price moved on to hit my target of 15 ticks and kept on going. Not a good way to recoup the earlier losses. I really should not have moved that stop!!

I decided to stay away from any other signals as it was very clear that we were in consolidation, not to mention we had hit the Avg daily range, we were also into a 4 hour dead zone (previous zone) and of course the time of day aaand I was noticing that the nearest zones from entry or signals were less than what my target of 15 ticks would have been. It also seems like that later we get the sketchy'er the signals get (is that a word?).

Tomorrow will provide plenty of opportunities to make up for today, and assuming my plan and testing of my plan holds like it did while testing ... I should have no problems on my way to getting funded.

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WillSmithRules
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Thanks, any idea have gotten funded and stayed funded?

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 abctrading 
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Thanks, any idea have gotten funded and stayed funded?

You might want to try out the TST chat rooms that are inside the Squawk Radio area. Below is a pic with a description of the "Badge" colors and the people that are in that particular room. Seems to be quite a few "Funded" Traders. Maybe you can strike up a conversation with them?

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WillSmithRules
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abctrading View Post
You might want to try out the TST chat rooms that are inside the Squawk Radio area. Below is a pic with a description of the "Badge" colors and the people that are in that particular room. Seems to be quite a few "Funded" Traders. Maybe you can strike up a conversation with them?

Ill do it... thanks for the reply

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 abctrading 
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I was able to get in 3 trades today ( 2wins and 1 scratch )
and ended up green for the day and was also able to pull
overall acct into the green after yesterday's red day.

I just set up a photobucket account .. so should be able to post pics a little better starting tomorrow .. as for today, try to follow along my comments with the pics below.


So the beginning of the day seemed a little slow to me but price finally hit Globex High and my pattern was setting up, so set my entry, but somehow did not get filled and then got an error message twice as I tried to go short. Finally gav up on the trade ... and lucky I did as price would have stopped me out!

My next short signal I passed on after putting a few things into context for me. First overall and bigger time frame seemed up to me and since we had blew up above GH price could easily bounce on the GH and continue up. Also, looking at my Ergodic and CCI indies .. they were in the middle of their windows. See pics for a closer look at what I was seeing.

Turns out that Short would have worked but would have been a grind getting there. I passed on a few other signals as well as we got closer to Oil Inventories. see Pics with descriptions). Once Inventories were released and price came down into a zone this pattern started setting up for Trade #1, so I set up and got filled. (See Pic) and had may Target hit.

Trade #2 showed it's face as price broke a flag pattern on 5 min chart and hit a supply zone. This pattern completed and I was triggered Short for Trade #2. I saw a double bottom print on a 1 min chart and ended up moving stop to b/e which got stopped out for a scratch trade.

Gotta get runnin here .. so for sake of time .... Took Trade # 3 ..... see pic for descriptions.

I will try to edit some details later tonight.

bc

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 trendwaves 
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Nicely Done !

I like each of your trade entries, APA put you into some nice trades.

$10 per RT commission ?

The only comment on your trades is tightening up the stop as quickly as you did, it obviously got in the way of trade #2.

I went back and reviewed your trading plan and the initial stop is clearly specified, but what happens after that is not clear. During your testing phase prior to starting the combine, did you have a specific strategy you followed for handling the stop during the trade ?

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 abctrading 
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trendwaves View Post
Nicely Done !

I like each of your trade entries, APA put you into some nice trades.

$10 per RT commission ?

The only comment on your trades is tightening up the stop as quickly as you did, it obviously got in the way of trade #2.

I went back and reviewed your trading plan and the initial stop is clearly specified, but what happens after that is not clear. During your testing phase prior to starting the combine, did you have a specific strategy you followed for handling the stop during the trade ?

Thanks for the comments! Regarding the stops .... yes, this is something I have wrestled with quite a bit and "IF" I were trading a normal personal account, I would not be moving those stops. However, within this combine, there is not much room for error when trading multiple contracts. Starting out with 2 cars, it only takes a couple of head fakes or flushes to get darn close to a Daily max loss. The way that these combines are structured, and the criteria they have for trailing draw downs and daily max losses and trade averages ...... I came up with a concept that did work in my backtesting. The plan (which was not listed in plan specifically, thx for pointing that out) is to go into "protect the account mode" after price moves in my favor by 10 ticks.

In the combine scratch trades do not count or are not added into the averages. Yes, we get hit for the comission/fees ($5/RT per contract). So I figure if price has gone in my favor for 10 ticks and having a target of 15..... I am darn close to hitting T1, and in testing it seemed 9/10 times price will hit T1. I don't have exact stats on that but on a conservative side, I am betting it is better than 70%. So if I move stop to b/e chances are it will continue to hit target. If it were to come back and take me out at b/e, or a scratch, ... that trade does not get added into the averages .. and if I were to get some slippage against me, it's actually ok as it would actually decrease my loss average. Where if I were to say .... do a b/e +1 tick, and take the win .. that actually drags my win averages down.

In my testing there are plenty of set ups or patterns that happen everyday. Some days more than others. so I am not so worried that I have a scratch or a loss here and there. I would rather get out of a trade and protect the account at this point and wish I were still in that trade .. than see it come back against me and wish I was not in that trade anymore. I can always jump back in if this pattern shows itself again.

While attempting to make sense of it all and actually pulling the trigger, I have and will continue to make mistakes or read the charts wrong .... this is a work in progress for me. And thanks to people like you asking questions such as these ... I will be able to reflect and clarify what it is I am actually trying to do here.

I will be chewing on this tonight ... and may add more to my answers in the next few days. Thanks again for asking the questions .. hope I made some sense out of it

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shanemcdonald28
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Would a possibility be to take profit on 1 contract after a move of 10 ticks ? That profit could then be used as a 10 tick improvement in risk reward ratio on the next contracts. Perhaps using the breakeven setup on the next contracts ?

This is only an idea to ponder. It comes from observations trading crude.

You certainly have your ideas worked out with a lot of thought and I think you will do very well.

If you had a couple of 5-7 tick trades per day instead of scratches, it might make a difference. I am not sure though.

best wishes on the combine

you can do it

shane

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 abctrading 
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Shane,

Yes, splitting up the contracts is certainly an option and one that I looked at using in my plan for this combine. In my testing I found that more often than not ... .I do not have the exact statistics on this .... price would hit 15 ticks almost as often as if it were hitting that 7-10 tick targets. So I decided for this combine to do T1 @ 15 ticks. In my plan once I have a +$1,000 pillow I will add another car which will be a runner for a T2 target of at least 25 ticks. ( T2 target will go to the next 6 range zone area ). Stops will still be moved to b/e for this combine to protect profits and keep me inching closer to hitting the overall targets for being funded. Once hitting a $2,500 profit, I will be adding a 4th contract which will be a big runner for at least 75 ticks or the next 60 min zone level. Stop for T3 runner will be moved as a trailing stop...... leaving plenty of room to breathe and will be tucking in behind at lest two 6 range zones away from price.

This is how I tested this plan and it worked well during testing. Will it continue to work?? Heh, I will let you know after 8 more trading days

Thanks for the questions and suggestions .. appreciate them!

bc

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shanemcdonald28
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yes

No doubt you will get this figured out. That sounds like a great plan to me. I wish you the best with execution.

Your effort will be rewarded.

best regards
Shane

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 abctrading 
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Day #3 is in the books. After what started out as a lil rough for me this morning, I was able to turn a Red day into a Green day.

I started realizing how long some of my posts were getting and will try to start trimming them down a bit by adding perhaps more screenshots with notations on them. I hear that a picture is worth a thousand words. So I will try that today and see how it flies .... comments are welcome on that too

I started off by hitting the snooze button a few too many times. The little kiddo (3 month old) had me up late, and oh how I love that snooze button. Anyhoots, jumped into the chair just as CL pit opened. No coffee and not a good early morning analysis got me off to a poor start, see pics for explanations. #2 was able to get some of that #1 back. but then had to give that back with #3. That one hurt as I was stopped by one tick only to see price go and hit my target of 15 ticks! Oh I hate that.

#4 turned into a scratch and then I had redemption with #5. I did however deviate from the original plan a little bit, and being honest with myself .... I would prolly do it again and again if this were to set up again. It also has me wrestling with the original plan of taking two cars off at T1 when only trading 2 cars. Something to be said about runners. But I will try to stick to plan as best I can and know that I better than halfway to the point where I can add that 3rd car to run a lil bit

I am still not seeing the Daily Averages I would like to be seeing .... but am really not too far off, especially with how things started off in the Red. Should not be too hard to get back on track there.

Thanks for following along ... comments are always welcome j/k really they are

bc

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 trendwaves 
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Really nice work on trade #5 !!!

Sometimes the best thing to do is get out of the way and let the market run. Your exit was very well handled as well, locking in the 50 ticks. Smart trading all the way through.

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 mykee 
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Keep up the goodwork abc!

May I ask, how long have you been trading using range? What makes you decide range vs, mins or tick?

mykee

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 abctrading 
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Keep up the goodwork abc!

May I ask, how long have you been trading using range? What makes you decide range vs, mins or tick?

mykee


Thanks mykee!! I have been looking at range bars for at 2 years I think?? maybe 3?? I choose range bars for the simple reason that I can easily see or calculate in my head how far price has moved or needs to move by knowing how big those range bars are set to. I like the 6 range as I feel that it gives me enough information to see how Price Action is happening and can help me drill down the Risk needed to jump into a trade when price gets into an area of interest. For me the 6 Range seems to flow well and fits within my Risk tolerance levels.

Please note that I am also looking at minute bars as well for context and levels. I have just been posting my trades off the 6 Range chart.

An example of using Range bars would be how I know that with the 3 bar engulfing pattern that I am looking for as a set up/signal or this TST combine, using a 6 range bar I know that my max stop or Risk needed will never be more than 25 ticks. Yes 25 is a bit heavy for me, but as a Max Risk, if the Reward or Target has been assessed and appears to be a minimum 1:1 or better, I would consider taking that trade.



If I were to be using a Tick or Minute bar, the size or Range of that candle/bar could easily exceed 25 ticks, especially in CL. That could be too late for me to respond or enter a trade as the Risk at that point would be way to big for me.

Check out the pics for a little more detail on what I am talking about.

Thanks again for the question

bc

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 abctrading 
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So I am most likely done for the day early as I already had 2 wins and am up $700. This brings my TST balance up to +1,200 or Combine account balance of $51,200. Also getting my daily averages closer to where they need to be (+350/day) to hit the $3500 target that TST wants to see.

I can also add a 3rd contract per plan now that I am +1,000. Hopefully get some runners and start to have some real fun here


Here are some pics of today trades. If I do any more I will update later.

bc

Update: Definitely DFTD. Added the last pic that shows some thoughts on how I would "Like to think" that I would have traded today had I been trading 4 cars and having 3 Targets. That would be a great day if so

bc

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 trendwaves 
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Quoting 
I can also add a 3rd contract per plan now that I am +1,000.

That was quick !

Excellent work, congrats on your success !

Be Patient and Trade Smart
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So I totally overslept today as my alarm did not go off. I might have been lucky that happened. I am not sure I would have caught the move up. I most likely would have bucked the trend and gone short at Globex High when my pattern/signal showed up .. and not sure if I would have covered stop to b/e after seeing price waffle and coil up around the Globex Level for quite some time before exploding to the upside. see pics for notes and thoughts I have running thru my head. I will most likely sit the rest of the day out as price obviously made it's major move and is likely to just range out where it currently is??? I will update later if that changes.

At this point I have 11 days left to trade 6, so I should be ok as far as making sure I get in the 10 days of trading the combine. No sense pushing it and making some stupid trades just to trade eh?!



bc

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 abctrading 
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So totally blew my rules today on my first trade which ended up costing me not only a win but gave me a red day in the end. See pics for details.

CL was a hard one today with inventories and FOMC happening, it was kinda grindy and was hard to read, at least for me it was. I saw a few places that I would liked to have gotten in on, but these set ups are not in this TST plan. Sooo, I passed on some pretty clear entries. Oh well, once funded or worst case, combine rollover, I can revise the trade plan to include some additional set up and signals to enter. But for now and this Combine, I will keep to the plan the best I can.

As I am posting here, it looks like it will be a Red day for me, which will bring my overall balance back under the $1,000 profit and bump me back to trading two cars. btw .. while trading today, I thought I was bucking the trend and actually did not add the 3rd car .. decided to reduce risk, especially with inventories and FOMC stuff happening, and went with 2 cars but split them up for a T1 for 15 ticks and a T2 placed near the next APA Zone. (not sure if that constitutes breaking rules/plan or not as technically with 3 cars I would be having two targets anyways). I am also wondering if I should be splitting up a 2 car trade from here on out? Chewing on that this afternoon and tonight ... comments are welcome please.

I will update more pics later.

bc

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 trendwaves 
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On trade #1 , if you look back at your chart (3) , you will see a retest of the APA boundary. Market hit the boundary level, bounced a little bit, came back and tested it a second time, then took off to your target and never looked back. That is such a common pattern that plays out every day, I think you need to almost expect it so it won't rattle you when it happens. Putting it another way, that retest pattern is intentionally designed to shake you out of your new trade. Which unfortunately it did in this case.

There are a million studies out there about moving stops, trailing stops, scaling exits, all that, the math keeps coming back to the same answer. Leave your stop alone, and let the trade run to target. The more contracts you have sitting at your target the better.

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 abctrading 
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So there were no trades today as apparently there was an issue with Rithmic/Vision Financial Markets (Broker/Data providers). It was a TST wide connection problem for the peeps that trade with Ninja. The folks at TST were great and super helpful in responding and answering questions about it. They ended up removing any activity that may have shown up today on trade reports and will also add a day to the backend of combine trade period just in case I need that one extra day to complete the 10 days of trading. Gotta chalk it up as "Sschtuff" happens and live to trade another day.

I did have a few signals that I tried to pull trigger on before I really figured out there was an issue with the connections. 1st one would have been a loser. Then perhaps a few winners after that. See pics of #1 and #2 TST attempts and then a few in regular SIM after hearing no TST today.


Back at it tomorrow



bc

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 trendwaves 
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Unfortunate about the system issue. Looks like your zone entries would have worked perfectly today.

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 abctrading 
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We had another day of technical issues with the Data connection and placing trades. :-(

So TST was super helpful again and is/was aware of the problem (which is not on their end), and they had hoped it was fixed as of mid morning today. For me I was done trading at that point however, and once again TST will delete any trades or activity for today in my combine trade report, and add a day on the backend in case I need it to complete the 10 days of trading required.

I will post a few pics of a few trades that got triggered, which I cold not adjust or get out of it once the pre order was placed, as well as some regular SIM trades that worked out rather well bouncing between zone levels. Woulda been nice to have today in the books, ah well ... there is always next week for that. :-)

Have a great weekend everybody, thanks for taking the time to stop by and check out the gibberish.


bc

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 abctrading 
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Wow, so today I got totally rag dolled. I didn't necessarily break any "Rules" accept for not really getting a good grip on context and what price action was telling me. Kind of had a context meltdown I guess you could say.

I started off with a quick 15 tick winner, and then missed or ignored a great Short signal, and it was all down hill from there for me. The next 3 trades were patterns/signals, but when really put into context .. were just plain poor executions on my part. I wrestled with the "should I move my stop to b/e" on #2 trade, but elected to hold firm as I remembered leaving a few good trades on the table last week by moving stop to b/e ... so I did not move it, of course it would get stopped out. On the next 2 trades I never even got a chance to move stops as I just never got above water to catch a breath and think about it lol

Sooo, a big Red Day, the biggest so far in this combine, and have some catching up to do if I am going to get my averages up and hit my overall profit targets. I am still in the overall green as far as profits go, but my Daily win/lose average is back to 50%, which needs to get back above 55%. Basically I can't have more than 4 Losing days with this 10 day combine. Also another TST parameter that needs to be met, is where the largest winning day amount needs to be greater than the largest losing day amount. That got flipped upside down today, so I will need to post some big days within the next 4 days of trading.

Here are pics of the 4 trades I took, along with some comments .. rather disappointing and ugly when looking back on them jeeeesh!!

Tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow .......


bc

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  #46 (permalink)
 trendwaves 
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Trade # 3 was a killer in so many ways, so sorry that all unfolded as it did.

As soon as I looked at the trade #3 chart I said to myself "ut oh"

My best advice is to get back in the batter's box, choke up on the bat, and try for a couple singles. Get back into rhythm with your method, and trust it to come through for you in the remaining days. You just need one or two trades that run in your favor. CL is the best market for a trade to run, stick to the fundamentals but let that runner fly when it comes to you. CL ATR spiked higher today and hopefully that will continue through this week. A rising ATR is going to expand out these daily ranges, which is perfect for you to capture a couple of big runs.

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  #47 (permalink)
 matevisky 
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Dont get me wrong, but the real issue was to not take that short at the #3. This is my biggest weakness as well. If there is a consoloditation area, and I am taking a trade to go long, and it is go against me, it takes me a lots of time to realize I am in the wrong side of the moneybag.

What I am usally doing at the sweatspots nowdays to analyzing it for short and for long (just like a chessplayer doing... for both side). And If I dont have enough pro-cons to to take one side, than I do nothing, but If I am taking a side, I am always telling my self, we have a chance, to we are not right, than I know what is going to do next.

As a technical trader, you have to accept that you are not able to figure out the future, from any chart. What you are doing is playing your edge, because you know that, if it is a winner, than you will win a lot. At the situation on #3 You would think that, hey if it is going for short, it will fall back like hell, that is good for me, I could win win that a lots of money...

Anyhow, no offense I am just in the same shoe as well...

Máté
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 abctrading 
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Ok so a little better today than yesterday! I only made 2 trades they were both winners. I had decided to be a little more aggressive and split the 2 cars up, having T1 at the usual 15 ticks, and then pushing T2 to the next 15 min zone away. I hit T1 with both trades today and was then stopped out @ b/e on both T2 runners.

I did not get the long right out of the gate, my signal happened too fast and I don't like that first 60 seconds after the pit opens. Looking back, still not sure I would even take it as it was soo close to the GH. Anyhoots . I did take my first signal to go #1 Trade short on a possible retest back to GH, and hope for a breakdown. Never happened, got T1 but stopped on runner. Went short again with #2 Trade signal, same thinking with T1 and possible room to get to a lower trend line or even lower down to the next 15 min zone which was way down there. Price made a lower high, but found support before it could make a lower low, and ended up coming back and taking out the T2 runner @ b/e.

I didn't get a signal at the top and then passed on the next signal to go long as I was expecting chop due to time of day and a wedge/triangle thingie happening. I was also thinking .... if I stop here, it's a green day, which would get my winning day % back above 55% and keep me in the running for a combine rollover at the very worst case scenario. (not getting a roll over is not in my vocabulary at this point )

Here are a bunch of pics that show the trades as well as thoughts going thru the head while it was happening.

Thanks for stopping by


bc

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 trendwaves 
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Nice Work !

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  #50 (permalink)
 trendwaves 
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I gave all this some thought overnight and this is my suggestion for your consideration.

You have two goals to achieve in your remaining three days of this combine. First to maintain or increase your win%. Second to make roughly $3000, or an average of $1000 a day.

You mentioned needing to be more aggressive in these last three days, which I do agree with based on your daily average P/L. Continuing to do what you have been doing is not going to be enough to reach the $3000 mark given the time available to work with.

Given everything up to this point, this is what I would do in this situation. I would start by maxing out the number of contracts you are allowed to trade, I think that is 3 contracts ? Now starting with that max, I will assume 3, I would slightly modify your open position management strategy in the following way. Use your 15 tick target for the first two contracts, so instead of one contract at + 15 ticks profit, take off two contracts. This locks in $300 profit. On the third contract I would trail that with a 10 tick trailing stop. So at the +15 tick mark, you have locked in an additional 5 ticks on the third contract. I would then let that third contract run as far as it wants with it's 10 tick trailing stop in tow. So if the third contract runs 100 ticks, you will lock in at least 90 of those ticks of profit. If the third contract comes back and stops out at 5 ticks, then your total profit on the trade is $350.

I think this strategy will allow you to maintain or improve your high win%, it won't really affect your first target at all, other than getting more help on the $ profit per trade attempt. The actual outcome and probability associated with that outcome will not be affected by having the extra contract at the +15 tick target. The stop strategy on the runner is designed to also help you with the $ P/L at the end of the day/combine.

This slightly more aggressive trade management strategy stays true to the intent of your original trading plan, and at a minimum, should allow you to achieve a rollover of your combine. So my suggestion here is, wait for a valid trade setup to form, then manage it more aggressively with respect to $ profit taken out of the trade attempt.

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 abctrading 
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So I did not do any trades with the TST combine today. My wife had a big meeting she had to go to, which translates into I have "Diaper Duty" for the lil kiddo. I may not be the sharpest tool in the shed .... but I do at least know that a little 3 month old and trading don't really mix so well, at least when he is in the same room or in my arms. Now that he is flashing smiles and his personality is shinning thru, I am not sure if he is the one demanding all the attention or if it's really me demanding all of his attention .. lol.

As I write this (in between a little nap) I didn't see any of my patterns until inventories came out. SO was actually prolly good timing on my part to take the day off. There were some decent signals however, and some good trades could have been made. Especially if just going with the trend. Wow.

I will post some pics at the EOD just to show the signals/patterns that happened.

Hope you all are having or had a great morning . I sure am/did

bc

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 abctrading 
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trendwaves View Post
I gave all this some thought overnight and this is my suggestion for your consideration.

You have two goals to achieve in your remaining three days of this combine. First to maintain or increase your win%. Second to make roughly $3000, or an average of $1000 a day.

You mentioned needing to be more aggressive in these last three days, which I do agree with based on your daily average P/L. Continuing to do what you have been doing is not going to be enough to reach the $3000 mark given the time available to work with.

Given everything up to this point, this is what I would do in this situation. I would start by maxing out the number of contracts you are allowed to trade, I think that is 3 contracts ? Now starting with that max, I will assume 3, I would slightly modify your open position management strategy in the following way. Use your 15 tick target for the first two contracts, so instead of one contract at + 15 ticks profit, take off two contracts. This locks in $300 profit. On the third contract I would trail that with a 10 tick trailing stop. So at the +15 tick mark, you have locked in an additional 5 ticks on the third contract. I would then let that third contract run as far as it wants with it's 10 tick trailing stop in tow. So if the third contract runs 100 ticks, you will lock in at least 90 of those ticks of profit. If the third contract comes back and stops out at 5 ticks, then your total profit on the trade is $350.

I think this strategy will allow you to maintain or improve your high win%, it won't really affect your first target at all, other than getting more help on the $ profit per trade attempt. The actual outcome and probability associated with that outcome will not be affected by having the extra contract at the +15 tick target. The stop strategy on the runner is designed to also help you with the $ P/L at the end of the day/combine.

This slightly more aggressive trade management strategy stays true to the intent of your original trading plan, and at a minimum, should allow you to achieve a rollover of your combine. So my suggestion here is, wait for a valid trade setup to form, then manage it more aggressively with respect to $ profit taken out of the trade attempt.


Thanks for the input Trendwaves!! heh heh, hope you are not losing any sleep thinking about my combine lol

I was thinking along the same lines as you. The combine I chose allows 5 contracts, and there is a $1000 daily loss limit. I had planned on doing 3 cars, peeling 2 off at 15 ticks and then moving T2 or runner down to the next 15 minute level. and have stop moved to b/e either once there is that initial retest of entry and or T1 is hit. I am not sure if I would do a 10 tick trailing stop .. that sure seems like a short leash, but I do understand the logic behind that, and will chew on it for the T2 runner. I would like to go back and test to see if 10 ticks is"enough" or should it be like 15?? or 50% of the move? or 2/3rd's of it?? My plan has been to follow with a technical stop. One way, which is how I would play a T3 runner, would be to follow stop 2 zones behind price looking at a 6 range chart. or basically seeing those LL's and HH's and keeping an eye on the trend, and trying to best determine when to lock in and when to let it breathe and run.

Trading with 3 cars and having a 14/15 tick stop really only gives me 2 bad calls a day out of the gate. Those losers add up fast!! I feel that the parameters of TST are really forcing me to "protect' the account and move stops just to ensure I don't blow out or at least have an opportunity to trade another trade if it does not work out. Almost like a "It either runs or it doesn't" kind of trade, and if it doesn't run, and comes back and takes out a stop .. just reset and wait for the next "possible" runner. I wrestle big time with the studies and history of moving stops and how it does not pay off to move them. Perhaps I really should be trading a bigger TST Combine where the drawdowns and daily loss limits are larger and I can trade more cars and have those multiple Targets. Perhaps these "cheaper" lower combines are more geared towards a scalper? Or perhaps, I should have just started off with trading 2 cars and splitting them off from the get go, definitely had some runners during this combine that would have been great and would also have kept me out of some bad trades too.

Anyhoots, thanks again for the ideas, I will chew on them and do some backtesting.

bc

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 abctrading 
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So I received a pm earlier today and thought there were some good points and questions that might help somebody else that is looking into doing a TST Combine. I won't be posting their name, just what they wrote (hope you don't mind )


Quoting 
I been looking at TST and with 3 contracts trading needs 1500 profit on 30,000 account, but 5 contracts you need 3500 profit on 50,000 account.
so 3 cont vs 5 cont you need to double the profit on 5 contract vs 1/2 of that with only 3 contracts.

with 3 days left i wouldnt go aggressive just to make it, thats when we trade greed instead of our trading a plan.
my option is to go easy and pass it so you can roll it over to another combine, as long as you have all the boxes check for the combine rules, it is still good even if you didnt make it to the profit target

Thanks for the input! I am planning on trading 3 cars with 3 targets. If I can get a runner or two in the next day or two, I might add a 4th or even a 5th car on the last day, making sure I don't blow out and also that I stay green for a rollover, will see how it goes here.

As far as the difference between 30k and 50k combines .... I was not comfortable with only having a 500/day loss limit. With the 15 tick stops I am using with 2 cars, if the first trade was a loser .... what or how would or could I trade the second trade? Smaller stop? One contract? wait for the next day? I didn't like that thought , and that is why I went with the 50k combine. Well that as well as the $$ deposit was not much different than the 30k, and definitely less than the 100 and 150k combines.

If I were to do this again, I would probably do the 100 or 150k with a bigger or larger daily loss limit, and be able to trade multiple cars with the ability to take a couple of hits or bad trades in a day and not be so worried to pull the trigger again that same day.

Thanks again for the input .. good luck with whichever combine you choose to do!

bc

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 matevisky 
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So I received a pm earlier today and thought there were some good points and questions that might help somebody else that is looking into doing a TST Combine. I won't be posting their name, just what they wrote (hope you don't mind )



Thanks for the input! I am planning on trading 3 cars with 3 targets. If I can get a runner or two in the next day or two, I might add a 4th or even a 5th car on the last day, making sure I don't blow out and also that I stay green for a rollover, will see how it goes here.

As far as the difference between 30k and 50k combines .... I was not comfortable with only having a 500/day loss limit. With the 15 tick stops I am using with 2 cars, if the first trade was a loser .... what or how would or could I trade the second trade? Smaller stop? One contract? wait for the next day? I didn't like that thought , and that is why I went with the 50k combine. Well that as well as the $$ deposit was not much different than the 30k, and definitely less than the 100 and 150k combines.

If I were to do this again, I would probably do the 100 or 150k with a bigger or larger daily loss limit, and be able to trade multiple cars with the ability to take a couple of hits or bad trades in a day and not be so worried to pull the trigger again that same day.

Thanks again for the input .. good luck with whichever combine you choose to do!

bc

I would make into the considaration as well TopStepTrader scout team will review your trades as well. Changing the daily routine just because achive the goal will not make you founded trader in my understanding, but being disciplined no mather what, believing your system, and execution works, is a much more achievment, which will make you successfull in a long term.

But this is only my view. You know win a trade doesnt mean you have right, or loosing a trade doesnt mean you are wrong Being consistent is the real goal here...

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 abctrading 
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I did not take any TST Combine trades today. The thinking or rationale was because I only have 3 days left and I really need to average some rather large days to hit the funding target, I was being very cautious and wanted to stack up the odds for a good trade vs. just taking a stab at a trade.

I did not quite know what to do with the retest of GH where I got a signal to go long, so I stayed out of that opportunity. Then while trying to put the market into context I was distracted and totally missed seeing a doji candle print on the 1 min chart up there at the HOD. and for some reason thought we could keep going higher after seeing that bounce on GH. Totally missed the trade of the day.

From there, PA just seemed to grind in this choppy chop slow drift down. I have been killed in that kind of market before and by the time 8:30 (pst) rolled around I decided to just call it a day, as I just was not feeling any mojo and did not want to push it, and get caught in the middle of the Ranginess, especially since I have the time to complete this 10 day combine might as well wait for a better (for me at least) day to trade.

Looking back at the day, certainly there were some great signals for me to take, sure was hard in real time for me though!!

Looking forward to having another shot at it tomorrow.



bc

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 trendwaves 
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A lot of good points being raised.

My last suggestion was made with consideration to the other points being made here. I recognized the dilemma raised by the counterbalancing Combine goals which is why I took my time in making the suggestion. I was torn between the idea of reducing risk by cutting trade size to 1 contract and trading for the rollover with as little risk per trade as possible. Or, by adding a contract at the first target with the chance of catching a runner or two and getting close to the account balance goal at the end of the combine.

My suggestion was to continue taking the valid trade setups, and continue using the same 15 tick first exit target, and to continue using the same stop loss placement. I felt this would stay within and not disturb the analytical work that had gone into the original design of the strategy before the Combine was attempted. In terms of being "more aggressive", my suggestion was to add 1 contract for the first target, which I believe will not disturb the original trade win/loss probability. I do recognize adding 1 contract does increase the dollar amount at risk per trade attempt by 1/3, which is the "aggressive" part of my suggested modification.

This all raises an interesting problem. What is the optimal trade strategy given the Combine goals ?

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 abctrading 
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trendwaves View Post
A lot of good points being raised.

My last suggestion was made with consideration to the other points being made here. I recognized the dilemma raised by the counterbalancing Combine goals which is why I took my time in making the suggestion. I was torn between the idea of reducing risk by cutting trade size to 1 contract and trading for the rollover with as little risk per trade as possible. Or, by adding a contract at the first target with the chance of catching a runner or two and getting close to the account balance goal at the end of the combine.

My suggestion was to continue taking the valid trade setups, and continue using the same 15 tick first exit target, and to continue using the same stop loss placement. I felt this would stay within and not disturb the analytical work that had gone into the original design of the strategy before the Combine was attempted. In terms of being "more aggressive", my suggestion was to add 1 contract for the first target, which I believe will not disturb the original trade win/loss probability. I do recognize adding 1 contract does increase the dollar amount at risk per trade attempt by 1/3, which is the "aggressive" part of my suggested modification.

This all raises an interesting problem. What is the optimal trade strategy given the Combine goals ?

Thanks Trendwaves for the input and comments. I really like being forced to put words to my thoughts and try to explain them. Helps me filter everything .. which is a very good thing!

I think I have landed on a strategy for the last 3 days. It does change up the original strat, but not by much. I will be going to 3 contracts and have a T1 of 8 Ticks where I will pull 2 cars off and essentially give the T2 runner a "free trade." I was noticing the difference between pulling t1 at 15 ticks vs 8 and it is only $140. At this point I would rather get into a risk free trade quicker and hope that it gets some legs and not sweat it if it does get stopped out. This can help me feel better about not moving stop regardless of what price does. If taken out .. I can just re enter on the next signal. I attached a pic of a basic spreadsheet that I put together that helped me see the differences between stop and target sizes.

Let's get real here ... I need some big days to hit combine objectives, and this could be one way to do it. It can also help me stay in the green for a worst case scenario where I get a rollover.

Thoughts are welcome ... thanks for taking time out of your day to check in and follow along this journey.

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 trendwaves 
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The "free trade" part of your strategy is something I am fairly familiar with. It is the technique I use when scaling out of a position, in place of the traditional "move the stop to breakeven". So I know for certain that part works well, it is mathematically sound.

The part I do not understand is how do you know when to get out of the runner ?

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 abctrading 
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The "free trade" part of your strategy is something I am fairly familiar with. It is the technique I use when scaling out of a position, in place of the traditional "move the stop to breakeven". So I know for certain that part works well, it is mathematically sound.

Yea, it definitely eases the emotions on that runner and should help me not want to move my stop so quickly.


Quoting 
The part I do not understand is how do you know when to get out of the runner ?

Good question ..... I really don't know. One thing I do know however is that there is a 100+ Tick move very often in CL.

"IF" I can get in close to a major pivot and let it ride .... I should be able to get that 100 tick move ... it may take all day, but it can get there. It happened today for example.

You are right however . I should figure out a point where I do lock in profit or when seeing something so blatantly obvious that the trend is over, I should play that or tighten the leash on that runner. It seems that often the distance between 15 and 60 min zones is greater than that 100 ticks ... so that would actually make sense to let it run if the distance of opposite zone I am coming out of is that far away.

Bottom line ..... I need those big runners to hit these targets. Sure I may be able to do several smaller target trades and chip away at it that way .. but that just exposes me that much more to making a bad call.

I am realizing more and more how I really should have done the larger combine where I could trade the 15 contracts and have a daily loss limit of $3k. That way I could trade more contracts and get those runners, and not feel so pressured if I were to make a few bad call in a row in a day to jump right back in and trade out of a hole without the worry of blowing out the max daily loss. Even if I were to trade just 6 contracts I could weather at least 2 full stop outs, and another where all I hit was a T1 ... that would keep me within that max daily loss. So far with what I am seeing, I have not made more than 3 bad trades in a row . which I would stop at anyways .. with my 3 strikes and out. And I should go back and count how many trades I did get into in this combine where had I not moved stop to b/e and had I at least 1 runner ... I would have had that 100 tick trade. I will do that now that I am thinking about it and post it later or tomorrow.

Anyways ... hope that made some sense, and feel free to poke holes.

bc

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 trendwaves 
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The Average Daily Range of the CLH4 contract over the last 5 trading sessions is $1.49 or 149 ticks. Over the last 20 days the average daily range is $1.54, because of a slight spike up in volatility in the last half of January. So lets just round this down to 140 ticks to play it conservatively. This covers all trading sessions that make up one complete trading day.

So with this statistical information at your disposal, you can then figure out where that 100 tick runner your hoping for is statistically likely to end. The path the market takes to create that 140 tick daily range is another story unfortunately. If tomorrow is not a trend day, then you may have to withstand some wicked 30-40 tick pullbacks before that 140 tick range completes. For me personally, if I see 40 or 50 ticks of profit in a position, I am going to tighten down that trailing stop significantly because I am not willing to risk all 40 ticks of profit to squeeze that last 10 or 20 ticks of potential profit out of the trade. I will try my best to get that last part of the trend, but the trend will have to hold the technical stop levels it creates the further it runs.

The funny thing is, the middle part of the trend is often the hardest to hold through, the late or ending phase of trends is usually the cleanest and easiest to hold even with a tighter trailing stop.

Anyways, these are market tendencies that might help you if your fortunate enough to find yourself in a range extending trend move.

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 abctrading 
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Today did not bode so well for me. Had a Red day, and really the last Red day that I can possibly have in this combine. The remaining 2 days need to be green in order to meet that TST criteria of Daily win% greater than 55%. I also now have a negative in the overall account balance, something that really needs to get back up in the positive area, at the very least.

So looking less and less likely for a full funding at this point, but a rollover is certainly still very much in play.

So today I got short #1 with 3 cars when it retested GH and failed to break recent hi and I got my pattern/signal.... got two of them actually . really thought I was in for a good start of the day. NOT the case, I was stopped out for -17 ticks. Ouch! Trade #2, was a poor execution on my part as I thought a pattern was forming while breaking a Trend Line. I had preset my entry as usual, but apparently miscalculated the high/low of that signal bar .. and never got the signal or pattern, but was picked up for my #2 Short trade with 2 cars. (I scaled back to 2 cars to manage risk as 3 would have put me over the Daily Loss limit. Price did break that TL but never closed below it and ended up stopping me out for -15 Ticks. So with fees I am sitting with a -$835 Daily P/L .... hmmm what to do?? I can scale down to 1 car and just try to scalp out of this hole by breaking the "plan." or I can sit out, take the loss, and see what the next two days bring? I decide on the latter and stick to the plan that I tested for months prior to this combine and only trade the patterns/signals that show up, with at least 2 cars, which means I will call it a day, take the loss and see if we can make some lemonade out of this tomorrow.

Here are a few pics of today. I will also post some thoughts going thru my head later as well.


bc

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 abctrading 
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So today was a rough day to read for me. I started off with a loser that got me in the hole, really not how I envisioned things happening. #2 Trade I went short with 3 and pulled 2 off for +15 which got me back to even+ and then ended up locking in +6 on runner which got stopped out. see pics for set up and what I was seeing.

I did not see anything else that I really was liking or wanted to risk the current green day which I needed to have as I cannot have another losing day per the TST combine requirements. So tomorrow, or whichever day I trade the 10th and last day will be a do or die day as I will need to profit a minimum of $401 to have a green overall account balance. If I can do that, I will at the very least get a rollover and take another stab at this. Not sure if I will trade tomorrow Tuesday with the new FED Yellin speaking ... but will watch and see how PA looks going into the open and 1st hour. If it's slow and grindy I will stay away.

Gotta go take care of some J.O.B. stuff ... more later


bc

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 abctrading 
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No trades today .... will hopefully get at it tomorrow and pass this combine for a Rollover.

bc

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 abctrading 
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I did not trade again today. I had a HUGE window job that I am bidding on, and had t get it out by this morning. Was up until 130am and back up by 530 working on it. Figured I really need to be focused on this 10th and last Combine trading day. Hoping tomorrow will be that day!

Not sure how I would have fared today had I traded. Now that I am looking back on it, I most likely would have tried to go long on the retest bounce on Globex High. Looks like I would have hit t1 for 15 ticks, but runner would have been stopped out. I did not get any of the pattern/signals for the rest of the day. I see quite a few good entry signals looking at other time frames and PA. The big question is would or should I take those entries, and essentialy break my trading plan for this combine? It is quite obvious to me now, that this current plans needs some tweaking, but do I dare tweak it on the last day of the combine just to try and ensure a rollover? Decisions... decisions ... decisions. Hey $190 bucks is a $190 bucks eh? At this point I will still try to stick to plan, but if the last half of the day rolls by and I have not hit the rollover parameters . .I just may pull out all the weapons and either make it to the finish line limping and wounded or go out in a blaze of glory

Either way it will be fun!

Thanks for stopping by and checking in

bc

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 trendwaves 
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I just may pull out all the weapons and either make it to the finish line limping and wounded or go out in a blaze of glory

bc

Thats the spirit !

:

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 abctrading 
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I elected to not trade again today as I still was working this take-off for the J.O.B. .... which will force me to trade tomorrow Friday, because that is the last day that I can trade this TST Combine. Good news, I finished the take-offs and should be good to go for pit open tomorrow.

1 or 2 winners will get me a rollover, shouldn't be too hard .... right??!!


bc

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 trendwaves 
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Best of Luck tomorrow !

I really hope you get the rollover tomorrow

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 mykee 
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Hope you'll get the rollover. Good luck!!!

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Eric B
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so, did you limp across, or did a drone missile lock on to your position?

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  #70 (permalink)
 abctrading 
Long Beach, CA
 
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Ok so appologies for not updating this sooner, I had started to on Friday but being Valentines Day I decided to spend some time with the wifey :-) Then I had intended to post all weekend but kept getting called in to work the boats, so never got a chance to update.

Thanks for all of the comments and PM's of support!! Appreciate them!!!!

Unfortunately, I did get the rollover. I had some weird technical issues with a few orders that I had never experienced before, and it was all downhill from there. I have tried to document it all in the pics, but as things spun out, I did not get as many screenshots for everything I was throwing at the wall in an attempt to see what stuck and try to salvage this rollover.

So I was being super patient waiting for some solid entries. Finally around 645ish my time, I see a great set up and go to pre set my entry to go long. But, a little dialog box opens up, kind of like a properties box. So I keep trying to set this order and it keeps happening as price starts to move thru where my entry should have been. It gets to the point that I do not want to chase price and let it go. I start taking screenshots to document this, and the retest happens and another opportunity to go long. HA! the same thing happens again, I cant get long . WTH!! Price moves away again and I elect not to chase it again. Oh how I should have just hit the BUY market button!! see pics.

So I figure out what happened .. if the cursor is hovering over a drawn object or indicator, right clicking will pull up the options box to either go to properties or whatever. In the heat of the excitement I did not figure it out and missed out on the trade of the day!!

SO, from here I never see a great signal, and 0800 pst rolls around, and I am getting a bit antsy to get some trades off. Only 2 1/2 hours left until the pit closes. Lets pull out all the guns and go out in a blaze of glory!!

#1 Trade gets stopped out. #2 I get it back and then a little green. #3 I give it all and then some back ... and then it starts turning into a frenzy! At this point I didnt get too many screen shots as I was too busy trying to stop the bleeding

Ended up going until after the pit close to try and make it, but of course on a Friday of a Holiday weekend price goes deadly sideways for the last part of the day. I try loading up 5 contracts with tight stops, which of course does not work well, and did not here either. I end up real close to the max drawdown and tried to get one more off, and must have gone over with commish/fees as the system shut me down automatically with a full blow out of Daily Max Loss.

Not exactly how I envisioned this Combine thing pan out, but it's ok, I will trade another day. I learned alot during this Combine, and will be tweaking the trade plan to try and work within the parameters of TST's rules. I may even try to approach them with a "Personalized" combine and see what that looks like. but need to figure out exactly what to approach them with.

I am on the fence with doing either the big one so that I have a little more wiggle room on the Daily max loss, or doing the smallest one as the profit target is only 1500. on a 10 day that is only a $150/day average.

The tough part for me is the tight risk parameters. It's almost like you must move stop to a b/e position just to protect profits and or to not get near a daily max loss limit. It's like get your entry and hope for a quick runner that never retest your entry. Or maybe pull stop up after one retest of entry. But at the same time this seems to me to be creating a plan of fear of losing money which really should have no place in a plan. But how do I deal with the tight daily loss limit? How often does a trade or two go against you and then that 3rd trade is the big winner?!! but if already close to a Daily Limit, you would need to let it pass or really risk a blowout? Or maybe build up some daily profit before going in with multiple cars? but then the best trades happen at the beginning of the day, so why would you want to trade more and expose yourself to more risk if you don't have to? Like I mentioned ... I will be wrestling with a new trade plan customized just for the TST parameters. I will test it and then try another combine. Thinking it will be at least a few weeks for me to figure it all out.

I "think" I understand TST's thinking and the why's of their rules ... I may not like them, but I guess if I want to trade OPM . I need to adhere to "their" rules. I will investigate the "personalized" combine and see what can be tweaked and what can't ... and try to update this thread when that happens. Also, if/when I do another combine, I may do another journal, but would more than likely start a new thread for that.

Thanks for following along and all of your support and comments .... this has been fun :-)

bc

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 trendwaves 
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Shame about the tech glitch/feature you ran into on the first long entry setup.

If you had been filled on that long , it would have made your rollover, and the rest would never have happened.

Thoughts in retrospect:

It's a tough decision with respect to trailing stop management. In this I mean, once your trade is X ticks into a profit, do you continue to leave your stop at it's original point or tighten it up ? This is something I notice early on into your combine, where you would get 10 ticks into profit and still have the original stop, thus 20+ ticks of open risk. Maybe go back over your valid trade setups in your combine, even the ones you missed or had some technical issue with, and see if you had done everything perfectly and with a different trailing stop technique would it have helped you reduce your overall risk.

For example: If the new trade goes 8 or 10 ticks into profit then adjust the stop to the technical swing level where your entry signal formed. When the first contract is filled at first target, adjust your stop to the next technical swing level if one exists... and so forth until you run out of contracts or the trailing stop is hit for a profit.

Also, as we discussed, starting with 3 contracts , given only 10 days to work with, makes it mathematically much harder to reach the profit goal because with only 10 days the total number of trade setup's is limited. If it's me with those TST risk/reward/time constraints, I am going in with max contracts (5) right out of the starting gate with a much tighter risk control strategy as mentioned above. The heat of 5 contracts is going to force you to manage the risk better. Starting with half the contracts (3) and such a wide stop/open risk, then the profit targets will have to be a lot bigger to make the math work given the 10 day constraint. By the day 7'ish point in the combine, you even suggested letting the second contract run for 100 ticks, which indirectly confirms my analysis.

Thanks for sharing your experience, and for allowing me to share my thoughts as well. I think you have a good trading method, so stick with it and keep learning and growing in your skills.

Be Patient and Trade Smart
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  #72 (permalink)
Eric B
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Sounds like you still have a bit to work on, and combines are an expensive way to work! I think they still have a 'practice account' type subscription, where you pay only $100/month to sim trade all you like and develop further at your own pace and trading approach. If you can mentally maintain the same focus (despite there not being a deposit on the table to lose) it's a much more economical path to take. TST is great for development in this way.

When you're fully ready, take that combine to see if you can pass, or even just make a little bit of dough - these two things are a good indicator that you're ready.

Then it's up to you decide whether to work for them, or take your newfound abilities to a self-funded account.

However, I would advise against being in perpetual try-to-beat-the-combine mode - you'll find you'll have spent all of your time and effort to gain what actually amounts to a pitifully small sized trading account (since the live trader cut-off losslimit is the acct size to you) where you'll be trading with very high leverage. And if you manage to make money under these conditions, you then only keep 60%.

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  #73 (permalink)
 abctrading 
Long Beach, CA
 
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RE:
Quoting 
Trendwaves - "Thoughts in retrospect":

Yes these are great points and I will be looking into the trades I took as well as the ones I did not and try to weigh them all out. I think one thing I will be doing for sure will be to add entry criteria into this plan. For example, using a 1 min chart, if I were to see a reversal type candle in a zone or area of interest, I may be able to enter and reduce risk considerably more than if I were to just stick with this 6 range 14/15 tick stop size. Another for sure if I enter with 2 or more will be to have that T2/T3 run a bit .. like at least to a zone of opposite type. Perhaps even just using 15 min zones as entry and target areas.

I will also look into the concept and crunch some numbers on your suggestion of running 5 cars right off the bat, and what kind of targets make sense with something like that.

I may even just look into the possibility of just doing the smallest combine and trade 1-3 cars which only has a $1500 profit target. Again, will be crunching numbers and looking at past trades and do some more testing and will come up with something.


Quoting 
Eric B - "I think they still have a 'practice account' type subscription, where you pay only $100/month to sim trade all you like"

Good ideas and suggestion, however I will pass on their practice acct. Seems silly to me to pay $100/mo to do what I can already do for free with Ninja and SIM accts. (I do have an acct with AMP that has funds in it, which gets me the free data feed). Having that little bit of skin in the game is great, but not quite what I am looking for especially as I am just re tweaking that plan. Perhaps once the plan is set and ready to go, that skin in the game would be good .. but then at that point, if I think the plan is a go .. then it's combine time for me.

Regarding the split and acct size .... yea that is a concern, however, for me and my current financial position, it's either go for it with TST, or hang it all up until I have enough funds to do it on my own. If I can figure out a plan that works well within their parameters, and get funded, then start socking away the splits to be able to trade my own acct .. or even build it up and utilize their OPM and leverage with larger size .... something that I definitely would not be able to do any time soon right now, it seems worth it to me. The deposit amounts are not that big, and really, the way that I am adding it up, I could take $1000 and have 5 stabs at a combine to get funded, or I could drop that $1000 into my AMP acct and still only be able to trade one to two cars, and IF I were to make a few bad entries, and blow out, then what? I am pretty sure if somebody gets funded, and blows out, they go back and do a combine to get funded again .... not sure if that is a "rollover" combine or if they have to pay though for that, but if you have done it once, you should be able to do it again? I dunno, maybe I am cray cray .... and I can tell you one thing for sure .... I will be testing and crunching numbers and will figure out something here within the next few weeks.

Thanks again for the comments/suggestions.


bc

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  #74 (permalink)
 bobwest 
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RE:

I am pretty sure if somebody gets funded, and blows out, they go back and do a combine to get funded again .... not sure if that is a "rollover" combine or if they have to pay though for that ....

They used to say that if you were funded and had to go back to the Combine (blew the account), you would be eligible for two free Combines. I went looking for that today on their web site and couldn't quite find that, but this may be your answer:

What happens if I struggle as a funded trader? ? Help & Feedback Center


Quoting 
What happens if I struggle as a funded trader?

A funded trader can opt for the Redevelopment Opportunity and they will receive two complimentary 10-Day Combines. Details will be discussed with each funded trader.

I'm not sure what "struggling" means here; probably an email to their support would help clarify current policy.

But it looks like you would have the option. Hope that helps.

Bob.

When one door closes, another opens.
-- Cervantes, Don Quixote
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 trendwaves 
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I was thinking about this today, and I had the thought that perhaps you might consider starting a new Journal as a follow on to this TST Combine Journal.

It would make a nice tool for you as you modify your trading strategy coming out of the Combine experience. I think you did a really nice job with this journal. The new journal would help you get your strategy organized and help you stay on track with what you come up with.

If you think about it, the Combine's function is to hold your feet to the fire with respect to adherence to a set of trading performance goals. Maybe your Journal could help fulfill that role for you. Lay out your personalized performance goals in the journal, and document your progress in achieving them.

Be Patient and Trade Smart
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 abctrading 
Long Beach, CA
 
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trendwaves View Post
I was thinking about this today, and I had the thought that perhaps you might consider starting a new Journal as a follow on to this TST Combine Journal.

It would make a nice tool for you as you modify your trading strategy coming out of the Combine experience. I think you did a really nice job with this journal. The new journal would help you get your strategy organized and help you stay on track with what you come up with.

If you think about it, the Combine's function is to hold your feet to the fire with respect to adherence to a set of trading performance goals. Maybe your Journal could help fulfill that role for you. Lay out your personalized performance goals in the journal, and document your progress in achieving them.

Thanks Trendwaves ... I will chew on this and try to figure out a way to journal that modification.

One thing I noticed while journaling this last month ... is how I really need to get a grip on how to juggle or balance "Life." A marriage, our first newborn kid, two J. O. b.'s ..... trading, backtesting .... and topping that all of with an informative, engaging, and helpful journal has not been easy. Thank goodness the kiddo started sleeping thought the night, but wow, when I started that combine .... that sleep deprivation stuff was no joke

With that, I know there is a way, I just really need to navigate through it all and weave it together so that I have some sort of balance. I will try to figure out some sort of formula or method to document my modifications and discoveries, or results, so that it is not boring, will actually make some sense, and I guess most importantly .... helpful. (suggestions very welcome here )

Thanks again for the comments and suggestions.


bc

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 trendwaves 
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Ran across this TST webinar today that might be helpful...

Kevin Davey presents "Post Combine Trading Analysis" - YouTube

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