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Hearing protection

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Wobbley
Sa-tevp
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Dr.Don
Chris Miceli
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czman
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Hearing protection Empty Hearing protection

Post by Jake1911 Mon May 30, 2016 8:17 am

What are the best ear muffs out there for the best protection on a budget?

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Post by james r chapman Mon May 30, 2016 8:40 am

Peltor makes a 33db muff but plugs and muffs work well
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Post by Richard Ashmore Mon May 30, 2016 8:44 am

Jake1911 wrote:What are the best ear muffs out there for the best protection on a budget?

a.  The best muffs cost less than two boxes of Federal GM45A. This is not an area to try to save money. 
b.  Any decent circumaural hearing protection, combined with earplugs (double hearing protection), is the way to go, IMNSHO.
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Post by Axehandle Mon May 30, 2016 8:50 am

Howard Leight Impact Sport electronic for me.  I spend 30 hours a week working as RSO on an indoor range.  Plugs and muffs for me on a 9 hour work shift.  The Howard Leight has exceptional battery life.  Replacement ear pads are easy to find.  The muffs are slimmer cut at the bottom to better clear a rifle stock.

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Post by dronning Mon May 30, 2016 9:37 am

Axehandle wrote:Howard Leight Impact Sport electronic for me.  I spend 30 hours a week working as RSO on an indoor range.  Plugs and muffs for me on a 9 hour work shift.  The Howard Leight has exceptional battery life.  Replacement ear pads are easy to find.  The muffs are slimmer cut at the bottom to better clear a rifle stock.

Howard Leight by Honeywell Impact Pro have a 30db NRR the Impact Sport has a 22db NRR.  The Pro is not as thin as the Sport.


- Dave
I have the Sport
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Post by Jwhelan939 Mon May 30, 2016 9:46 am

I also have, and love, the impact pro. I had the Caldwell before. The leight's blow them away.

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Post by walt k Mon May 30, 2016 10:53 am

Whatever muffs you decide on I would highly recommend getting gel filled ear pads if they are available for that model. I have them on my Peltor Tactical/Pro muffs and love them.

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Post by DavidR Mon May 30, 2016 3:36 pm

steer clear of the ones on amazon that say they are the highest rated muffs you can get, cheap china crap, stick with a 3m or Honeywell product. Howard leight are top notch too.
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Post by czman Mon May 30, 2016 9:40 pm

I bought two sets of Beretta muffs, which are NRR37.           czman

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Post by walt k Mon May 30, 2016 9:45 pm

Are you sure about that? A rating of 37 db sound reduction is extremely high.

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Post by czman Tue May 31, 2016 7:51 pm

walt k wrote:Are you sure about that? A rating of 37 db sound reduction is extremely high.

My mistake - the maker is Browning. I am looking at my second pair, in the unopened package, and the NRR is 37. They are called Browning HDR hearing protectors. The package states 37 NRR and that the HDR means "high decibel reduction".           czman

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Post by james r chapman Tue May 31, 2016 9:44 pm

walt k wrote:Are you sure about that? A rating of 37 db sound reduction is extremely high.
they appear to be the real deal according to Browning and are well reviewed online.
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Post by john bickar Tue May 31, 2016 10:52 pm

Is sticking .38 shells or pencil erasers in your ears no longer a thing?

HUH?

Speak up, son - you mumble too much.
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Post by Chris Miceli Tue May 31, 2016 11:06 pm

I rock some earplugs and pro ears on top.

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Post by Dr.Don Wed Jun 01, 2016 10:02 am

Use all the protection you can.  I wear $6000+ of hearing aids when I'm not on the line, and the Doc says its noice induced loss.  I'm thankful for them.  But there isn't enough protection possible in some circumstances.  A couple of days ago at my local indoor range they squadded a guy next to me shooting a short barreled .223 with a muzzle brake.  The concussion knocked my scope off target and my towel to the floor twice.  And that's with one of those magnum-proof dividers between the bays.  I just stepped back and let him shoot...then they moved him to another area.  Crazy loud.
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Post by jmdavis Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:08 am

Who makes the muffs with replacement parts. It's an older company, I am interested in a pair.



Found them they are the Clark Ear muffs
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Post by Sa-tevp Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:22 am

3M and David Clark sell parts for their hearing protectors. I know David Clark offers gel pads too, as I had some for a while and one ended up leaking down my neck.

37dB seems amazingly high for the Browning hearing protectors.

The benefit of ear plugs and hearing protectors used together is that each filters a different part of the sound spectrum.
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Post by jmdavis Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:39 am

I just ordered a set of Clark 19A muffs. I have bought a number of less expensive muffs to use, but they always have some issue. The Peltors tend to hurt my head and the wires bend easily, the Howard Leight Ultimate e-muffs broke after 6 months where the ear protector pivot is. I used a short screw to fix one side and then the other side broke. The chinamart passive muffs have broken for me in less than a day. I literally did not get one use from them. 

The Clark 19A ordered from Clark with 2 day shipping will be $47. I have one friend that has had a set for decades, traveling on the outside of his gun box or in his range bag.

I will use these with some CeCa custom plugs I had made last year at Camp Perry. They have proven well built and reliable, too.
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Post by Wobbley Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:50 am

The advantafpge with David Clark is that their comfort parts for their pilot headset line fit most of their noise abatement muffs.  Gel ear seals, sheepskin head pads will fit most of their muffs.
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Post by dronning Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:52 am

james r chapman wrote:
walt k wrote:Are you sure about that? A rating of 37 db sound reduction is extremely high.
they appear to be the real deal according to Browning and are well reviewed online.
I too have 5K worth of hearing aids.

I was skeptical the the 37NRR was a misprint but they are real.  One thing I never knew was how to calculate the actual decibel reduction of hearing protection.  A 37NRR actually only reduced the decibels by 15.  The calculation is NRR-7 then /2.  So 37-7=30  30/2=15 decibel reduction.

Even a 37NRR may not get you close to what you need to prevent hearing loss this is why you may need more than just muffs to protect what hearing you have left.  

FYI 
Granted our loads are less powerful and the sound is not continuous but you get the idea.
.32 ACP 153.5 dB
.380 157.7 dB
.38 Spl 156.3 dB
 9mm  160 dB
.357 Mag 164.3 dB
.45 ACP 157.0 dB

For every 3 dBAs over 85dBA, the permissible exposure time before possible damage can occur is cut in half.

image from dangerousdecibels.org
Hearing protection Decibe11
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Post by jmdavis Wed Jun 01, 2016 12:15 pm

The effect also depends upon the frequency of the sound.
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Post by JWelch Wed Jun 01, 2016 12:48 pm

According to the military health training I'm required to complete annually, prolonged exposure over 85dB requires single hearing protection. Prolonged exposure over 105 dB requires double hearing protection. Any impact noise, such as a gun shot, over 140 dB will cause some level of instant hearing damage. To the question at hand, I wear Peltor Shotgunner earmuffs ($20-25) and foam earplugs any time I'm shooting at an indoor range or a covered outdoor range. Uncovered outdoor range, I'll wear one or the other. When I'm flying helicopters for work, I wear double hearing protection.  Nine years of combined shooting and flying and my annual audiograms are as good as when I started.

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Post by sixftunda Wed Jun 01, 2016 1:22 pm

The best way to increase the effectiveness of regular muffs is to buy a cheap set of Dr. Scholls Foot insoles.  Remove any foam in your muffs.  Cut the insole in a circle and put them inside the muff then replace the foam.  You will be amazed how it increases the sound protection.
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Post by PaulNYC Wed Jun 01, 2016 2:13 pm

I also like "Peltor Sport Ultimate 10 Hearing Protector" with earplugs.
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Post by Merick Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:25 am

As I read it appears that adding plugs to muffs or vice versa adds 5 nrr points to the highest rating to get the combined total.  Last time I bough muffs 33 was the highest I could find.  Instantaneous exposure or peak sound pressure like gunfire is a different animal than continuous exposure like machinery in the chart but the conclusions are the same; buy the highest ratings you can find and don't look back.  Asides from protecting your hearing it cuts down the stimulation of your flinch reflex.

I keep safety glasses, gloves, and foam ear plugs all over, in the garage, in the car, in gun cases or near power equipment, tethered to my work hat, anywhere I could use them.  PPE is never a wasted investment.

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