Unlike standard guitar tuning (E-A-D-G-B-E low to high), lap steel guitars are tuned to open and extended chords such as G, G6, C6, C, D and A. There are six strings on a standard lap steel guitars, but the instrument is also available in eight-string and 10-string variations.
Lap steel guitars have no raised frets. To change the pitch of the strings, the player holds a tone bar on his right hand, which he passes along the strings.
The following shows how to tune a six-string lap steel guitar from high to low.
- Open G chord
- Open G6 chord
- Open C chord
- Open C6 chord
- Open D chord
- Open A chord