hearing protection

jammer300

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I was out shooting my 300 win mag with a muzzle break today and was wearing my foam earplugs and it got me wondering in the fall when I'm hunting deer or elk am I going to wear these foam earplugs or are the electronic hearing protection aids available on the market better suited for spot and stalk type of hunting. I made the mistake of shooting that rifle 1 time without hearing protection and wont do it again. I have never shot a rifle with earmuff type of protection before. Do earmuffs interfere with your cheek weld to the stock? what are your experiences ( good or bad ) with them or do you just prefer foam plugs. thank you.
 

FearNoWind

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... Do earmuffs interfere with your cheek weld to the stock? what are your experiences ( good or bad ) with them or do you just prefer foam plugs. thank you.

Yes, and no. I've had earmuffs that were so poorly fitted that a good cheek weld position moved them off my ears. I have a set at this time that, if I adjust them carefully, stay in place when I shoulder the rifle. I use foam plugs along with my earmuffs when I'm shooting my muzzle brake. I rarely find a situation where I spot game and have to make sudden moves to take the shot. There's usually plenty of time to pull the earmuffs into position. I shot competition pistol for a lot of years with and without ear plugs/earmufs and my hearing tells the story of what carelessness can do. I'm gonna protect what I have left.
Noise Reduction Ratings Explained | Cooper Safety Supply
 

FearNoWind

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When making your fina decision, consider this.
The objective of most ear protection devices is to prevent sounds over 85 db in intensity from reaching the inner ear.
A set of noise reduction headphones or ear plugs or earmuffs that offer NRR 25 db protection sounds pretty good but the level of protection is a variable that must be applied with consideration of the sound level you're exposed to.
If you're exposed to 130 db and your protection is 25 db then you're exposure is 105 db or 20db over your maximum level. That's not protection ....
 

jfseaman

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Yes, and no. I've had earmuffs that were so poorly fitted that a good cheek weld position moved them off my ears. I have a set at this time that, if I adjust them carefully, stay in place when I shoulder the rifle. I use foam plugs along with my earmuffs when I'm shooting my muzzle brake. I rarely find a situation where I spot game and have to make sudden moves to take the shot. There's usually plenty of time to pull the earmuffs into position. I shot competition pistol for a lot of years with and without ear plugs/earmufs and my hearing tells the story of what carelessness can do. I'm gonna protect what I have left.
Noise Reduction Ratings Explained | Cooper Safety Supply
I second what FearNoWind said.

I use foam under http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000Q04MRG/?tag=lrhmag19-20

I shot my 338/26-Nosler without protection while hunting. Never again. It was hours before I stopped hurting. Indication of damage but it was the only time and I never listened to loud music.

During hunting I will use at least foamies.
 

Dosh

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300, I shoot my 30/378 Wby. with both plugs and electronic muffs. With the brake it is hell on the ears. At my age I'm lucky, I can still hear fairly well. Without the use of hearing protection you'll be saying "HUH" the rest of your life.
 

Stugots

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I picked up a pair of Pro Ears Predator Gold for $209.00 delivered a while back that I used for a week of hog hunting down in Florida last month and they worked phenomenally well. (Only drawback was they got a little warm on the ears). Granted, I was only shooting an AR15 with a 14.5" barrel, but the sound/amplification was very crisp and clear.

Predator Gold NRR 26 Electronic Ear Muffs

If I'm shooting handguns of a larger caliber rifle at a range I double-up with in-ear plugs. The electronic amplification still helps a bit if talking with others.

Regarding your question about earmuffs interfere with the cheek weld to the stock? Yes they do make contact and will ride up on my ear ever-so slightly, but the hearing protection is still doing what it was designed to do.

Someday I may go the route of custom IEM's but for now the Pro Ears are working well for me.
 

Dr. Vette

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I have a couple of sets of the Proears. I use them when on the range, but no longer use them in the field. They are generally bulky, and especially with shotguns a challenge to use.

I use custom molded plugs from EAR, Inc that I had made at the SHOT show a few years ago. However, local audiologists can probably make you some as well. There are no better plugs, and I use mine for many things other than shooting. Often I'll put the Proears over top of these at the range.
Earinc/Insta-Mold - Recreational Insta-Mold Earplugs

For field use I had EAR make me custom electronic aids:
Earinc/Insta-Mold - Digital Advantage Custom Electronic Earplug Series - electronic ear plugs for hunters, shooters, SWAT and tactical teams

You can wear them in the field, adjust volume and sensitivity, and they work well. Not inexpensive, but you can't buy replacement hearing. Sport ear makes similar units too.
 

FearNoWind

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As I previously noted, make sure you understand what the noise output level is for the rifle you're going to use. Even Proears only suppresses NRR 26db. Large bore rifles can produce 170 db .... so you're attenuating your exposure to 144 db.
I recently visited an audiologist (as a way to save my marriage) who explained my hearing loss to my wife. She explained that when my wife says "dinner is on the table" what I hear is "din i abe" - not the best way to communicate.
Inside the Cochlea are little hair cells that oscillate as sound impulses pass through them. Those cells oscillate at different frequencies so we can identify variations in sound patterns. Loud noises can distort those cells making them ineffective; that's what causes us to loose hearing at some frequencies but still be able to hear others and why hearing loss is so difficult to detect on our own as it gradually increases.
If you've already got adequate hearing, be smart and protect it.
OK .. end of rant. :)
 

jammer300

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thanks for the helpful replies from everyone. I'm going to do some looking into the products suggested and find the ones that I think will work the best.
 

Mudduck

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Feb 15, 2012
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S. Ontario Canada
Re: electronic ear plugs

I speak from personal experience when I say the following is a very cheap solution for saving your ability to hear for the remaining years of your life And still allow you to hunt effectively.

SoundGear Electronic Hearing Protection

Len have you ever done comparison tests or reviews for InEar electronic plugs in comparison to others on the market? I assume you have probably tried others at the various shot shows etc and I did read your review but I was wondering if you or any of your team had compared them to any of the others on the market.
I was looking at EARINC.COM Shothunt plugs and the Earplugstore.com also has a few other brands I was not familiar with. I can find many product reviews or comparisons like there are for Electronic ear muffs. Some people say you get much better protection by getting custom made inserts and that they stay in better. The only other comment I have read is to look for which ones are waterproof/ water resistant.
Sound gear are more reasonably priced which is a big plus.
I'm uncertain if I'm allowed to mention the other brands I had seen on the internet so if If not please delete that info but more information on differences of various in ear electronic plugs might help a lot of people take the plunge and spend some money to protect their hearing - the second most important thing to a hunter, with the first being our eyes.
 

Mudduck

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sorry, no.
Thanks for letting me know. Im sure it would be a topic of interest to many. I know people on other boards seem to pose the same questions about electronic ear plugs. However your recommendations on other products has been good so I may just have to spring for a set of the ones on your site. thanks for your quick response.
 

PGJPJ

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May 29, 2015
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Oregon
I've been looking at the MSA Sordin Supreme. They are very expensive, but they offer some degree of water protection. Living in western Oregon, I hunt the rain forest quite a bit (not to mention duck hunting).

I Haven't seen anything listed in the specs for those others listed for water protection. Are there other electronic muffs that are at least water resistant?
 
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