Guitarists: How to tune *down* to D-flat?



You didn’t say which string you’re tuning down, or how you normally tune.

You might mean, tune so that the guitar is in standard tuning when you capo on the third fret. Or do you mean Dflat open?

More info is required to give you an answer.

Frolix: Thanks. I was asking for a friend. Sorry I didn’t give you enough to work with. His tuning is EADGBe and yes, he wants an open D-flat. No capo involved.


Open tunings vary slightly, but if my assumption is that you want an open D, tuned down one half-step.

Open D is DADF#AD, D-flat would be (using a “b” for a flat symbol) DbAbDbFAbDb.

Sorry, I convolved two potential sentences. Read “if what you want is”.

Open Db - playing with horns or adjusting to a voice? Interesting.

The same thing in sharps, Open C#, would be C#-G#-C#-F-G#-C#.

I play in Open D to some extent, but don’t tune lower than that as the strings tend to get rather funky & loose past two steps.

Tune down each string one-and-a-half steps. You’ll get the tuning that pluto said.

Warning, your strings are going to be very loose.

If you’re going to leave it tuned this way, you might want to get some heavier guage strings to compensate.

Not quite. The fourth and fifth strings (nominally D and A) are only tuned down 1/2 step.

FWIW, Leo Kottke almost always tunes his guitars a half step or more low, usually more on his 12-strings. He says that’s where they “want” to be played. In fact, when I read the OP I assumed someone wanted to play along with Leo. I want to play along too, but it’s going to take more than re-tuning. Although I’m doing pretty well on “Living In The Country”, an old Pete Seeger tune that Leo covers.

Thanks very much everyone. No, my friend is a novice just like I am and Leo Kottke is like God to both of us. I will let my bud know your answers and I thank you on his behalf.