I think I have mutated ears


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davek
October 13, 2004, 06:02 PM
I want to start wearing ear plugs instead of the muffs for rifle shooting. I went and got some of those expensive plastic ones with the little valves in them. they kept falling out of my ears.

I got some of those cheap foam ones that look like supositories. I followed the directions, rolling them up and letting them expand in my ears...they expanded a little, then both popped out. I rolled them up tighter and really jammed them in there a second time. Stayed put, but felt really loose, and It seemed that I was hearing everything too well. got out of my car, stepped up to the range, dude three lanes down opens up with a .270...:what: ...I stagger back to my car, chuck the ear plugs and put on my trusty muffs.

So am I doing something wrong, or do I have deformed ears?

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shermacman
October 13, 2004, 06:14 PM
Let's see pictures! Get close up of ear hairs and wax build up!

Actually, please don't! I find that the foam plugs either fall out or get too disgusting to use. The earphones offer much better decibel reduction than plugs, especially with rifles!

Black Snowman
October 13, 2004, 06:26 PM
You have larger than average ear canals. Not a big deal. You can get custom in-ear hearing protection made.

Google search results for custom fitted ear plugs. (http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&q=custom+fitted+ear+plugs&btnG=Search)

Bravo11
October 13, 2004, 06:28 PM
When I was in the Army they had us fitted with sized plastic ear plugs. It hurt like heck when they fitted us but those suckers would stay in when you placed them. Find an ear/hearing doctor and see if they can custom fit some plugs for you. I personally don't like ear plugs but some people say they can't get a good cheek weld with muffs on.

Dave R
October 13, 2004, 06:32 PM
First time I tried the foam plugs, I had 'em falling out, too. Then my buddy told me how to put 'em in. They have to go in pretty far. Almost to where it feels like they would touch your eardrums. (But not 'quite' that far.) Then they seal up pretty nice.

My favorites are the cheap blue plastic ones with ridges around them. They also have to go in pretty far. I told my boys "when they're in far enough, it feels a little like they'll suck out your brains." Then you have a good seal.

When we're done using the plastic ones, I boil a cup of water in the microwave, then drop them in the boiling water. Cleans 'em for next time.

Black Snowman
October 13, 2004, 06:38 PM
Oh, cotton balls with some plastic wrap around them can work in a pinch too.

jsalcedo
October 13, 2004, 06:43 PM
One time I was given 9mm cartridges to stick in my ears for an impromptu shooting session.

Uncomfortable as heck.

shermacman
October 13, 2004, 06:45 PM
I can't believe I forgot about form fitting foam plugs. My son had to have them after ear surgery. They work! He had to wear them for swimming. When they were in he was absolutely stone cold deaf as a post. And they didn't fall out, witness an eight year boy jumping off a diving board, swimming, etc.

Standing Wolf
October 13, 2004, 07:36 PM
The gods are sending you subtle hints. Don't wait until they yell, scream, hop up and down, and whack you over the head with a two by four, eh?

Seriously: speaking strictly as a guy with a ±70% hearing loss, don't rely on plugs alone.

TarpleyG
October 13, 2004, 08:31 PM
I have the same problem. At the FL state match in March, I had a custom made pair of silicone plugs made by The Ear Lady for about $50. Best $$$ I ever spent.

Greg

Moparmike
October 13, 2004, 09:49 PM
I have to double up on hearing protection, or I have the flinch from hell. THose cheap foamies suck though.:cuss:

Jake
October 13, 2004, 10:16 PM
"One time I was given 9mm cartridges to stick in my ears for an impromptu shooting session."

"Oh, cotton balls with some plastic wrap around them can work in a pinch too."



I always used cigarette butts when nothing else was handy. Strip off the paper and fluff out the filter.

rust collector
October 13, 2004, 11:26 PM
Guess I'm just lucky. I have only one bad ear passage. I roll the right foam plug and she pops right in and expands for a nice hermetic seal. After the left one gets rejected a couple times, I have to reach over with my right hand and pull the top of my ear to straighten out the ear canal, and then the little bugger goes in OK.

Then someone starts talking and I instinctively pop them out, only to start all over. %#*@)!

I have muffs, but they're heavy and bang on the buttstock. Used to use those sonic ear-valve thingies for indoor smallbore shooting, and attribute some of my hearing loss to them. The electronic muffs if well designed and executed would be worth the price, but I'm afraid to gamble 130 beans only to be stuck with something that's not as effective as it's made out to be.

If someone had a real success story with the electronic muffs and has tried a bunch of different ones, I hope we'll get the story. Would come in handy when Kerry is talking about what a sportsman he is.

Sunray
October 13, 2004, 11:43 PM
"...get too disgusting to use..." That's why they're disposable.
Anything other than proper ear defenders does nothing to protect your hearing. Empty cases, bits of cotton, cigarette butts, etc do nothing at all.
The inexpensive soft plastic ear plugs seem to work well. With the foam type, try pulling your ear up and back a bit when you put them in. I've used them for years both for shooting and in noisy factories with no fuss.

Dionysusigma
October 14, 2004, 03:06 AM
For me, it's a weird situation. I have a pack of foamies, a pair of valved ones, and have used muffs before.

Foamies +: Comfortable, seem to block the sound well, good cheek weld.
Foamies -: May cause pressure buildup.

Valves +: I can hear both quiet and loud things comfortably. I don't have to yell, but an AK doesn't hurt one smidge. Good cheek weld.
Valves -: Most uncomfortable things I've ever stuck in my ears.

Muffs +: Deaden everything. .308 is just fine. Comfortable. Easy to remove and put back on.
Muffs -: Every time I try to get a halfway decent cheek weld, a gap opens up and EVERYTHING is too loud. They get uncomfortably toasty after a while.

I usually go with foamies.

SRYnidan
October 14, 2004, 12:29 PM
I would not advise using the ear valve type of plugs. I have been a fairly serious shooter and wore them from about 1979/80 to 1983 when the Air Force tested my hearing. Between the time I enlisted until my physical in 1983 I had suffered an significant hearing loss. I talked to an army audiologist (no ax to grind not trying to sell me any thing) told me that by the time the valve closes most of the damage is already done. I had a set of the EAR molded silicone plugs made and have wore them or a combination of them and muffs( at indoor ranges) ever since. When I had my hearing tested in 1999 for my retirement physical, there was no significant change from 1983 which really surprised the technicians.

middy
October 14, 2004, 01:04 PM
I've always heard that you need to wear full muffs for real protection, as the plugs leave the mastoid bone behind your ear unprotected.

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