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PinnedAndRecessed
06-19-2005, 9:00 AM
We're all interested in the shooting sports and how it impacts our hearing. Noise hurts us and is measured in decibel levels.

Here are some examples. Video arcades - (110 dB), firecrackers - (125-155 dB at a distance of 10 feet), live music concerts - (120 dB and above) , gunshots - (150-167 dB), movie theatres - (118 dB), health clubs and aerobic studios (120 dB), sporting events (127 dB), motorboats - (85-115 dB), motorcycles - (95-120 dB), snowmobiles - (99 dB) , "boom cars" - (140 dB and above).

Gradual hearing loss may occur after prolonged exposure to 90 decibels or above.
Exposure to 100 decibels for more than 15 minutes can cause hearing loss.
Exposure to 110 decibels for more than a minute can cause permanent hearing loss.

Properly fitted earplugs or muffs reduce noise 15 to 30 dB. The better earplugs and muffs are approximately equal in sound reductions, although earplugs are better for low frequency noise and earmuffs for high frequency noise.

Note that some earplugs only reduce the noise 15 dB. If you’re shooting a gun at 167dB, the noise level is still 152dB.

Simultaneous use of earplugs and muffs usually adds 10 to 15dB more protection than either used alone. I use cheap muffs and cheap plugs. If they’re only providing the minimum protection level, then I’m still suffering hearing loss while shooting. Plus, muffs won’t seal around glasses. (I wear glasses.)

I’m making an appointment with an audiologist this week to figure it out.

LongBch_SigP226
06-19-2005, 10:39 AM
Thanks for the informative post.

rkt88edmo
06-19-2005, 2:06 PM
Originally posted by PinnedAndRecessed:
I use cheap muffs and cheap plugs. If they’re only providing the minimum protection level, then I’m still suffering hearing loss while shooting. Plus, muffs won’t seal around glasses. (I wear glasses.)


I almost always double plug as well. I wonder if you used soft ear plugs and cut out sleeves for the arms on you glasses if you would be able to develop a better seal.

PinnedAndRecessed
06-19-2005, 2:10 PM
cut out sleeves for the arms on you glasses

Huh?

rkt88edmo
06-19-2005, 3:56 PM
Spear an earplug onto the arm of your glasses. Position it where the glasses pass under the gasket on you muffs in order to seal the hole. shape to fit.

ivanimal
06-20-2005, 12:33 AM
WHAT DID YOU SAY?

Kestryll
06-20-2005, 10:15 AM
This is an important issue for shooters, hearing NEVER comes back.

Due to some unprotected outdoor shooting, industrial noises from various shops I visited as part of my job back when, indoor raquetball and having the occasion to discharge a .357 in my livingroom I have had low level ringing for several years now.
I recently went shooting with a friend outdoors with cheap pharmacy-style earplugs and got more battered. After a few days of "Huh?" my Wife insisted that I go to an audiologist.
The results are "substantial and signifigant hearing loss in the left ear and signifigant loss in the right." and a recommendation to get a hearing aid for the left. It won't fix the hearing, nothing can, but it may help with clarity. I missed a good portion of the 'spoken word' test. I heard the noise but misinterpreted the words leading to answering questions on an entirely different subject!

The end result of all of this is that at age 38 I have lost the upper register on the right side, most of the upper register and ALL of the mid-range on the left and will be wearing a hearing aid to keep up with conversations.

Wear those plugs and muffs! Wear both!
And pay attention to the other loud noises in your life. I had no idea that indoor raquetball was the aucoustic equivilent of repeated gunshots!

Hearing damage is nerve damage and guess which part of the body cannot grow back...

Turbinator
06-20-2005, 1:13 PM
I'll tell ya, even for odd jobs around the house, I slap my earplugs in -- vacuuming the car, hammering a nail, things like that. It may seem like overkill, but even today I can hear the garage door opening from all the way across the house - the NEIGHBOR'S garage door. http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Turby

Rascal
06-20-2005, 7:01 PM
Originally posted by Turbinator:
I'll tell ya, even for odd jobs around the house, I slap my earplugs in -- vacuuming the car, hammering a nail, things like that. It may seem like overkill, but even today I can hear the garage door opening from all the way across the house - the NEIGHBOR'S garage door. http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Turby

No Sir! It is NOT overkill! I too suffer from hearing loss. I know it annoys the wife when I say Huh? but it really annoys me that I can't hear. http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

Eljay
06-22-2005, 8:37 AM
I'd say overall that shooting has been good for my hearing... since I have plugs and so forth around I'm much more likely to wear them other times I should. I've even made big points at concerts to have my date say she wished she had plugs, and sure enough, there's always a couple of pairs in my jacket. http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Turbinator
06-22-2005, 10:30 AM
Originally posted by Rascal:
No Sir! It is NOT overkill! I too suffer from hearing loss. I know it annoys the wife when I say Huh? but it really annoys me that I can't hear. http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

Thanks for the validation, I'm glad to hear that someone out there doesn't think I'm crazy for slapping on the muffs for vacuuming the car or the floor.

I even put 'em on during reloading - you never know when a primer might go off..

Turby

imported_booknut
06-30-2005, 3:19 PM
Turby,
I've been wearing ear muffs to vacuum with since the 80s

I kick myself when I go to a theater without plugs.
Last time we went to a movie, I forgot to bring the plugs and wound up with napkins in my ears.

I've had ringing in both ears for years, I'm 45 now.
I can't hear the coffee pot whistle when I'm anywhere in the house except the kitchen, unless my ear has a straight shot to the kitchen.

We have those cars with the loud stereos drive by fairly often.
The sound from them makes our front window panes rattle and we feel the bass.
I know those kids are going to have some hearing loss later.
I'll bet they could care less for now though.

One of the worst experiences I've had for noise was on a bear hunt in Alaska.
I went with two friends.
We all had Rem .338's, one of those had a KDF brake on it.
I was positioned between these guys and none of us had hearing protection.

I shot my grizzly and he spun around to run.
Before I could follow up, the other two guys let loose!
I KNOW I lost some hearing that day!
Come to think of it, the KDF was on my left and that's the ear that is the worst.

Up until then, I never thought about taking hearing protection on a hunt.

imported_Matt-man
06-30-2005, 3:25 PM
I can't believe people don't wear some kind of hearing protection while hunting with centerfire rifles. A lot of people say, "oh, it's only one or two shots." That's true, but the way my ears are, one unmuffled shot from an '06 is enough to ruin my week. I'm getting to the point where I need to take precautions against friggin 22 rifles.

And yes, I wear my 30dB-rated Peltors if I'm going to vacuum the house, or grind on something with the Dremel.

BigAL
06-30-2005, 3:53 PM
And here I was thinking I was the only person to wear hearing plugs while vacuuming.

imported_edbon9
06-30-2005, 10:56 PM
Originally posted by BigAL:
And here I was thinking I was the only person to wear hearing plugs while vacuuming.

you guys vacuum?? http://www.calguns.net/laughroll.gif

imported_Matt-man
07-01-2005, 10:15 AM
Hey, we've got a Dyson. That thing's bad-*** enough that my masculinity is not threatened by using it. Matter of fact, I have to be careful not to vacuum up the cat.

It's also a tiny bit less noisy than our old machine...

Boondocksaint
07-01-2005, 12:42 PM
I say "huh?" to my wife all the time, but my hearings fine.....

I've played in loud bands for the last ten years and always put in plugs. They actually make the sound in a garage more clear. Being a musician, I value my hearing A LOT. I haven't even thought of doubling the muffs and plugs.

When I take my wife to shoot, I am constantly coaching her. Does "doubling up" detract from conversing at the nearby indoor range?

chunger
07-13-2005, 4:04 AM
I'm an audio engineer, and hearing is pretty darn important. . . haven't had any problems at all double plugging at the indoor range.

If you're concerned about getting that extra little dB, get some "sports" glasses made with polycarb lenses. . . the kind basketball players use. The elastic straps will seal better than the arms on normal glasses around the ear muffs.

-'Chung

bigjim
07-13-2005, 7:32 AM
My wife is a screamer.... need to plug up for arguements or sex. I am the only one?

atek3
07-23-2005, 11:52 PM
I used to hate wearing plugs, prefered muffs. Then I got a motorcycle and couldn't wear muffs. Wearing plugs everyday I've gotten quite used to them. Now I wear plugs when I ride, and when I shoot rifles (plus muffs). When I shoot pistols, just muffs.

atek3

Turbinator
07-24-2005, 11:06 AM
Originally posted by Matt-man:
Hey, we've got a Dyson. That thing's bad-*** enough that my masculinity is not threatened by using it. Matter of fact, I have to be careful not to vacuum up the cat.

It's also a tiny bit less noisy than our old machine...

Dyson machines are awesome. I've yet to have a problem with mine, although the colors could be more "tactical".. Maybe I'll have to Dura-Coat it? http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Turby

imported_11Z50
07-25-2005, 6:36 PM
Huh? What did you say?

I just got my final VA disability ruling, and I am significantly impaired due to hearing loss and tinnitus (ringing ears). I will be getting my hearing aids soon, mostly at the wife's request. Sometimes, for a married man, deafness is bliss. Still, my percentage of disability overall for hearing was only 10%.

I would strongly recommend that folks wear eyes and ears at all times when shooting. I do. I wore plugs in the Army as much as possible, but there are times you just can't do that. I don't think it was small arms that wrecked my hearing, but crew-served weapons and riding around in helicopters and tanks.

ALWAYS WEAR EYE AND HEARING PROTECTION WHEN SHOOTING!

A nice set of muffs and some cool shooting glasses are a must for the informed gunner.

bu-bye
07-25-2005, 7:21 PM
Originally posted by bigjim:
My wife is a screamer.... need to plug up for arguements or sex. I am the only one?

HAHAHAHAHA I think my wife would kill me if I plugged up for either of them.

imported_booknut
07-29-2005, 6:40 PM
Originally posted by atek3:
I used to hate wearing plugs, prefered muffs. Then I got a motorcycle and couldn't wear muffs. Wearing plugs everyday I've gotten quite used to them. Now I wear plugs when I ride, and when I shoot rifles (plus muffs). When I shoot pistols, just muffs.

atek3

If I drive the highway with my windows open on my truck, I put in those wax earplugs.
I keep one of those platic cases with the four wax(or are they silicone?...they're moldable anyway) plugs in them.

Once I shape them to an ear canal, it's like having custom fit plugs.

Years ago I used to drive emergency vehicles when all the sirens were mounted over our heads on the roof.
Never wore hearing protection.
Now I see EMS and F.D. wearing hearing protection, sometimes with comm built-in, when they are driving around in their rigs.

There's a whole lot of places and equipment around each of us everyday that probably makes a bit too much noise for our hearing safety.

I knew a missile technician who worked on patriots (I beleive).
He was in his 20's and had hearing aids in both ears.
He credited his hearing loss to some of the equipment he used while working on the missiles.
No matter how it happened, I really felt sorry for him, having that much hearing loss so young.
He was getting medically discharged when I met him.

Back in the days, I worked in jobs like the oilfields of West Texas, around heavy machinery, in machine shops running a mill, etc.
If anyone complained about the noise back then, they were laughed at and told to suck-it-up or leave.

It's pretty incredible that after all the generations who've gone through the same situations with the same ignorance, we still havn't figured out how to get the young folks to think smarter than we did.