Hearing protection and HD


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JellyJar
September 9, 2009, 05:36 PM
One thing that many people do not give either enough thought to or no thought at all is the damage that can be done to your hearing should you have to fire any firearm inside their house. However bad it is to shoot a particular gun ammo combination outside must be much much worse when shot indoors. And remember that hearing loss is permanent. Once lost it is gone forever!

Using ordinary hearing protection, as pointed out in an earlier thread, may not be such a good idea because you may have to communicate with other family members and/or the police.

The solution is to get one of the active electronic hearing muffs that attenuates loud noises but can at the same time amplify soft noises. This way you can not only hear the quiet noises made by intruders in your house that you would not ordinarily hear but they will protect your hearing at the same time from the very loud discharges made by most firearms.

I have a pair of Wolf Ears that I keep on the dresser in which I keep my Glock just in case.

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John Parker
September 9, 2009, 05:44 PM
...or the solution is to worry about the immediate threat and not worry about your hearing.

cleardiddion
September 9, 2009, 05:58 PM
I think this has come up before.

Most people it seemed like, myself included, decided that a small bit of hearing loss would be worth the advantage of being able to hear everything without any doodads and whatnot.

I guess the situation would be different if there was a rolling gunfight every night but I till then I'll just stick with the original opinion.

okespe04
September 9, 2009, 06:02 PM
Aim, identify, open your mouth, breath, squeeze the trigger, repeat as many time as necessary, get a lawyer.

Lonestar49
September 9, 2009, 06:04 PM
...

Use sub-sonic, heavier, JHP's in any flavor: 45, 40, or 9mm, and the sound will be far less than shooting faster sonic - super ammo.

After all, we're talking close range within one's home..


Ls

LibShooter
September 9, 2009, 06:09 PM
There's nothing wrong with planning for ear protection in a HD situation, but if you have the presence of mind to don your muffs in the heat of battle, you're a better man than I. I'll be lucky to remember which end of the rifle to point at the bad guy.

The closest thing I ever experienced to a REAL HD situation came when I was 13 years old. My phone rang in the middle of the night. The 14 year old girl next door, home with her mother and little sister, said they heard someone break into their garage. I woke my dad and he was over there in seconds. He had his M1 Carbine, w/ 30 rounds of Soft Point. However, he had no shirt, no shoes, just his tighty-whities. He also hadn't thought to tell his numbskull son to stay put. I was right behind him. He never knew I as there until it was all over.

We got there and found no bad guys, but there was evidence of a break-in. I guess the sight of a heavily armed, half-naked old man scared him away. Dad didn't really notice his state of dress until he heard the sirens coming. Then he fled to dress.

I'm thinking if you'll forget your pants, you might forget your hearing protection. Another sign of adrenalin poisoning: The girl next door wasn't wearing much, either and I didn't notice until those same darn sirens.

smithmax
September 9, 2009, 06:41 PM
I don't think it's an issue of "forgetting" your pants, it's more of a time issue. Do you want to spend time putting pants on, or do you want to secure your family?

chevyforlife21
September 9, 2009, 06:45 PM
erase the thought of gettin hearin protection that could get u killed

eye5600
September 9, 2009, 06:56 PM
erase the thought of gettin hearin protection that could get u killed

Being unable to hear after the first shotgun blast could cost you your life. I think this one could go either way.

chevyforlife21
September 9, 2009, 06:59 PM
thats true eye i agree but its better then not being able to hear him walking around the corner before u take that first shot

mustang_steve
September 9, 2009, 07:23 PM
I say forgo the hearing protection. At the least you'll hear enough to start the defense.

EHL
September 9, 2009, 07:35 PM
The solution is to get one of the active electronic hearing muffs that attenuates loud noises but can at the same time amplify soft noises.

This is a solution in search of a problem. Nobody ever "plans" on being burglarized or intruded on. We only can plan enough to give us a fair chance of surviving and protecting those dear to us. Are you going to calmly put on shooting ear muffs while the guy is already in your house doing who knows what?!:scrutiny: If you are that confident in your abilities to "take down the bad guy" every time and have a happily ever after like it was some cheesy Chuck Norris movie, then my hat goes off to you sir.:D My only thing I'd remind you about if you are going to use hearing protection is: don't forget your shooting glasses.;)

Mike J
September 9, 2009, 07:46 PM
If my home is burglarized while I am in it wearing hearing & eye protection is going to be at the bottom of my priority list. I'm not saying you shouldn't plan however you like but I'm not worrying about it. Truth be told after 20 years in construction I have used powder actuated tools so many times without hearing protection I don't think it even matters anymore. They are better about supplying us hearing protection, eye protection & everything else now. Insurance rates have caused a lot of changes.

PandaBearBG
September 9, 2009, 09:08 PM
Forget the hearing protection, your burglar could be sneaking around and you'd want to hear him right? Besides I don't think you are going to get into an extensive firefight, a round or 6 going off or even a shotgun blast is about all it would take to de-escalate the threat (I hope) and I'm pretty sure you will be just fine. I've shot 81mm mortars with extended live fires for HOURS at a time, which is much louder than a handgun, and I lost my hearing protection early on. (The concussions literally rocked them outta my ears) and my head was only ringing for a few days. :) Wear them if you want to, your home your own choice, either with or without, you'll will be fine.

mljdeckard
September 9, 2009, 09:17 PM
The muffs might well be a good thing to have, but if for any reason it just wasn't practical to have them, I wouldn't delay the plan for them.

When I was young and stupider, I fired guns indoors, without hearing protection, to include heavy revolvers. I did not go instantly deaf. If I have permanent damage, it's minimal, and many other events contributing to it. But loudness is a factor in choosing my HD guns. Heavy revolvers are pretty much the loudest guns you can hold. My primary HD guns, my 870 loaded with #4, my M-1 carbine, and my 1911 are all significantly less loud than a .357 or .44 revolver.

HKUSP45C
September 9, 2009, 09:28 PM
Suppressor?

For ~1000 USD and a few pesky bits of paperwork you too (provided your state allows it) can fire a handgun (or rifle) in your home with vastly decreased chance of permanent hearing loss.

Problem? No problem.

SharpsDressedMan
September 9, 2009, 09:32 PM
I'm almost 57, and am considering having some electronic hearing protection next to the bed, along with the other "response" stuff. I would at least have the option, given time, to don the equipment. If time doesn't permit to gear up, then we go with whatever. I agree with the subsonic argument, and recently saw an ad from FN that made me shudder. It advocated an FN 5.7 in the hand of a woman, for home defense, probably because the 5.7 doesn not recoil much. I would not want to be cornering the halls inside my house with a 5.7, and I don't think it is nice to propose that to women who might not be fully informed, to be using a 5.7 for defense inside a house, for exactly the points brought up in this thread. Anyone else see that ad (p27, Guns & Ammo-Oct)?

SharpsDressedMan
September 9, 2009, 09:38 PM
Regarding suppressors, we are lucky here in Ohio to be able to buy suppressors without much hassle. I obtained the PERFECT tactical suppressor, used, and formerly a demo for a dealer from AAC. It is called the Scorpion, and doesn't fully suppress, but takes enough of a bite from a 9mm to be used without hearing protection. Barrel for my Browning, suppressor, and tax stamp were had for under $750. http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m247/matquig/DSC05246.jpg

JellyJar
September 9, 2009, 10:35 PM
I have learned many things in my life, one of which is ......

"There are no perfect solutions"

I am quite aware of the fact that you will not always have the time to don hearing protection should your house be invaded while you are there. Also I am aware of many occasions where the occupants of a house did not even have the time to access their defensive weapons. On one such occasion the wife was an active duty police officer :eek: So to argue that you should never use hearing protection just because it may take a few extra seconds to access is a non starter!. You go with the flow and handle the situation as best as possible. If you have prepared your dwelling properly it should in most cases slow the invasion down sufficiently so you can do what you have to do.

Remember that self defense is more than just owning a weapon or two. Weapons are just one of the spectrum of devices ( like good locks, doors, and alarms), mind set and tactics that are needed to stay alive in our sometimes violent world. Weapons by themselves are usually useless.

Also it seems to me that some have missed an important point about hearing protection. They seem to think that all hearing protection will make it difficult or impossible to hear family or police. Don't use passive hearing protection if at all possible. There many makes and models of active electronic hearing muffs that will at least allow normal sounds to pass through wile attenuating very loud noises and most of them will also amplify soft noises at the same time. Wouldn't it be great to be able to hear the breathing of a burglar should you have to check your house at night after becoming aware that someone may have broken in while you were asleep?

Stay safe all :)

chestnut ridge
September 9, 2009, 10:41 PM
You will not hear the muzzle blast. You will not feel the recoil.

9mm+
September 9, 2009, 10:46 PM
Nice photo of the BHP!! :)

hso
September 10, 2009, 12:01 AM
As Jellyjar said, the situation on any given day may or may not permit you the time to use hearing protection, but that doesn't mean that you discard the option. If you have the time to get the shotgun after you grab your handgun no one's going to tell you should not have even had a shotgun around because you might not have time to transition to it. Just don't make it higher priority than protecting yourself from getting shot.

After getting the family safely assembled in a defensive position no one recommends hunting through your house for bumps in the night. Hole up, listen, pretend to have some patience and make any threat come to you in your prepared position.

The OP pointed out that he was interested in active hearing protection. This is the type that you can actually turn the volume up to make those night noises easier to hear, so the arguments that you won't hear the BG coming don't apply.

If your ears ring for more than a day some portion of your hearing has been destroyed. It may not be perceptible, but each time you experience this you chip away another bit of your ability to hear. Don't like the sound of that? Ignore the advice to wear hearing protection often enough and the constant ringing can remind you to protect what hearing you have left.

conw
September 10, 2009, 12:10 AM
There many makes and models of active electronic hearing muffs that will at least allow normal sounds to pass through wile attenuating very loud noises and most of them will also amplify soft noises at the same time. Wouldn't it be great to be able to hear the breathing of a burglar should you have to check your house at night after becoming aware that someone may have broken in while you were asleep?

Sure, but it's one more thing to fuss with, turn on, etc...batteries could be low, it could malfunction...

No thanks.

JohnKSa
September 10, 2009, 12:18 AM
You will not hear the muzzle blast. You will not feel the recoil.That was correct in my case. But it didn't stop me from suffering very noticeable hearing loss from just one shot.

I have electronic hearing protection handy but I would NEVER consider putting it on unless it was obvious that I had time to do so. Obviously you don't waste time putting on hearing protection if there is an immediate threat.

Why would I recommend it?

It not only prevents hearing damage but it also prevents temporary hearing loss. After my shot I was essentially completely deaf for a couple of minutes--I couldn't hear someone screaming at me from feet away. After a few minutes my hearing came back partially but I was still severely impaired for some hours. Then it improved over the next few days to the current state which is noticeably worse than before the incident. Had I needed my hearing immediately after the shot there is no way I could have heard anything.

Good quality electronic hearing protection provides you with better than normal hearing that is still directional--you can still tell where it's coming from. That can be a huge advantage, particularly in low light.

flrfh213
September 10, 2009, 12:27 AM
i have carpet to deaden the blast and soak up the blood, i have a 357 and a walther p-22 w/laser. i will most likley go for the walther w/laser first, but i carry the 357 as ccw till bed...

Acera
September 10, 2009, 12:42 AM
Ok, how many years did our fighting men go into close combat with out hearing protection??

Yeah, you can still talk to a lot of vets from the service, and they can hear you. They probably fired a few more rounds than you will be in a HD situation.

Supersonic crack, come on folks. It is not that loud.

JohnKSa
September 10, 2009, 12:54 AM
Supersonic crack, come on folks. It is not that loud.Ever fired a centerfire handgun indoors? I have. It is that loud.Yeah, you can still talk to a lot of vets from the service, and they can hear you.I can hear you after my experience but I wouldn't have been able to for a couple of minutes after the shot. There was someone screaming at me from a few feet away and I never heard a thing. After a few minutes my hearing came back (that was a very strange experience, I might add) and I realized that I had been essentially totally deaf for a few minutes.

The long-term hearing loss (yes, from ONE shot) is a bummer and causes me some problems but thinking back to how badly I was impaired immediately after the shot is actually more concerning in terms of trying to function through a similar situation in the future.

jakemccoy
September 10, 2009, 12:56 AM
So, 911 would be on speaker phone, right?

ironcode
September 10, 2009, 03:47 AM
Suppressor, if you can afford it (and you can get through the legalities) is best. Me, if I hear a bump in the night, aside from my gun I'll probably grab my pillow as well and improvise like they do in the movies (you know, shoot through the pillow :-)). Probably won't look good in court, though :-)

PandaBearBG
September 10, 2009, 04:24 AM
I've never fired a centerfire pistol indoors, but I have fired centerfire rifle indoors along with about 16 other marines in a warehouse, and not a training warehouse, but one down town for MOUT training. We used blanks, but there were about 50 of us in there all at once (it was a large building) that included the 249's. It was loud and deafening and the acoustic boost of the walls was crazy, but a couple days of ringing everything was back again.

Understandably everybody's body reacts differently and I sorry about your hearing. I'm just relating my experience with indoor fire. As for temp hearing loss after inital shots, you just gotta adapt and use everything else that is working mostly eyes and visual cues.

These types of situation are never planned, you are never truely 100% ready and it never EVER works out just as you'd want. If some scraps and bruises are the result appreciate them because its only those injuries and not your life.

JohnKSa
September 10, 2009, 04:38 AM
As for temp hearing loss after inital shots, you just gotta adapt and use everything else that is working mostly eyes and visual cues.It SHOULD go without saying that if you have to shoot in self-defense without hearing protection that you won't be worried about the lack of hearing protection. It should also go without saying that one shouldn't waste time donning hearing protection if the situation is time-critical. Besides, both statements are moot--reality is that you WON'T worry about hearing protection by the time a situation has deteriorated to shooting, or if the time is so short that there's not a second to spare because other more pressing things will be on your mind.

But that doesn't mean one should completely write off the use of hearing protection in self-defense scenarios. You DON'T "just gotta adapt" if you can manage to don a good quality electronic hearing protection system. If you can't then you can't, but there are definite advantages, both short term and long term if there's time to do so and you have it available. ...but a couple days of ringing everything was back again.My hearing loss is noticeable, but the sad fact is that even if you can't tell that you lost hearing, if you experienced ringing in your ears, especially ringing that lasted for days, then everything is NOT back again. Ringing is indicative of PERMANENT hearing damage.

jakemccoy
September 10, 2009, 04:50 AM
I've read about quite a few home invasions. I can't imagine putting on some high-tech electronic ear muffs right in the middle of one. I would like to know if anybody here has ever known someone to put on hearing protection in the midst of a real home invasion. By "real", I mean a home invasion with an actual intruder who was intent on causing harm, not a bump in the night that turned out to be the neighbor's kid playing a prank or something like that. I'm not saying that putting on muffs has never been done before or that it can't happen. I'm saying that my skeptical old mind just can't imagine it.

I had a false home invasion one time. Let me tell you. My heart rate went from about 60 bpm to about 200 bpm in about three seconds. It's a strange feeling unlike any other. It's sort of like coming up on an unexpected cliff when snowboarding. In other words, it feels like "hey, this might be the end of it all right now". I would not have wanted to put on electronic ear muffs during my false home invasion, even if I could have. For one thing, I had 911 on the phone and not on speaker phone. That issue is a distant second to the fact that I just would not want electronic earmuffs on my ears while my life is flashing before my eyes.

Acera
September 10, 2009, 12:30 PM
JohnKSa asked:Ever fired a centerfire handgun indoors? I have. It is that loud.

Yes, quite a few times. I regularly shoot a Sig 9mm indoors, suppressed without hearing protection. We shoot the regular rounds, and the sonic crack is not near as loud as the sound of the bullet hitting the steel plate at the end of the range.

JohnKSa you really do need to check this out, contact a suppressor dealer near you and see if you can set something up where you actually get to hear for yourself what a sonic crack sounds like, without the normal report mixed in. You will probably change your tune when you get to hear it for real.

JohnKSa
September 10, 2009, 10:53 PM
...where you actually get to hear for yourself what a sonic crack sounds like, without the normal report mixed in. You will probably change your tune when you get to hear it for real.How is that the least bit relevant? I'm not talking about how loud suppressed pistols are but rather how loud unsuppressed pistols are.

If you're telling me that I would be surprised at how much quieter a suppressed firearm is compared to one that is unsupressed, you are wrong. I've fired a variety of suppressed weapons and they are much quieter. As if anyone would need to be convinced that suppressing firearms actually makes them quieter... :confused:I can't imagine putting on some high-tech electronic ear muffs right in the middle of one.Neither can I. But many home self-defense scenarios start with a "bump in the night" as opposed to a full-blown, kick-in-the-door home invasion. Am I suggesting someone should take a time out in the middle of a home invasion to go look for hearing protection? There's clearly no way any rational person could read my posts and believe that I am.

Of course I'm not suggesting that--neither is anyone else. On the other hand, if you're awakened by a strange noise with no imminent threat apparent, putting on a good set of electronic muffs can actually aid you in identifying and locating the source of the noise as well as protecting your hearing should the unthinkable happen.

LibShooter
September 10, 2009, 11:06 PM
Am I really the only one here who has accidentally fired a round with my hearing protection parked up on my head, leaving my ears unprotected? I've done it indoors at least twice. The ringing went away in 15 to 20 minutes.

Did I cause permanent hearing loss?

hso
September 10, 2009, 11:13 PM
It seems that a number of people in this thread are intentionally misrepresenting keeping active hearing protection available to use should the time permit as fumbling around looking for hearing protection while the alien zombie hordes kick in your bedroom door.

Everyone who has thought using active hearing protection in a home defense situation could be beneficial places it's use behind the primary focus of arming themselves to deal with an eminent threat.

Would I use them? If I had time, sure. That "time" is after my wife and I have secured my daughter's safety by arming ourselves and getting her into our bedroom and we're forted up.

mustang_steve
September 10, 2009, 11:49 PM
For what it's worth, I've had a seriously loud noise in very close proximity to my head occur in my living room (racing bicycle tire @ 150psi blew off the rim about 2/3rds arms length, bike was right in front of a wall, neighbor thought it was a gunshot, called the police, police had a good laugh when they got there). I felt like I had cotton in my ears for close to 3 hours.

A gunshot is certainly louder than that. So really, no defense suitable ammo is going to make it tolerable. Fortunately, the need to defend one's home should be uncommon enough that we may never have to do it, or do it less than a handful of times.

natman
September 11, 2009, 03:33 AM
You will not hear the muzzle blast. You will not feel the recoil.

You may not be aware of the muzzle blast. Your ears will suffer the damage nevertheless.

PT1911
September 11, 2009, 03:39 AM
OR... you could just wear hearing protection during your recreational shooting and hunting and not worry about it in a HD or SD situation... it is repeated exposure to such noises that causes the long term damage. Seeing as most of us are unlikely to be in such a situation anyway, much less many of them, I dont expect to be taking a time out to put on my muffs before protecting myself...


Sure.. you can argue that it only takes one .357 shot in a car to cause hearing damage, (questionable at best) but all I can say to that is it is better than losing my life.

SharpsDressedMan
September 11, 2009, 07:30 AM
If you can put on a gas mask in a few seconds, in combat, and go tactical through smudged, dusty lenses, then you can do the same with electronic ear muffs. All you need to do is make it part of your drill. Our soldiers practice the gas mask thing all the time. Try the ear muff thing. If you absolutely can't fuction, then don't do it, but that is more of a personal problem, and not shared by all.

Sav .250
September 11, 2009, 07:54 AM
Order of business:: Be awakened be a loud noise (glass breaking) jump out of bed, bang big toe on night stand. :cuss: Gather your thoughts. Try an remember where your hearing protection device is. Oh, ya, in the night stand. Jerk draw open. Opps, a little to fall as everything falls to the floor. Must be all the excitememt. Found-um!
Just then the bed room door is flung open..........................................

Bang...Bang. Game over. Better luck next time. :)

Hearing protection is good no doubt.............at the gun range or other places where loud noises might be a problem.

lobo9er
September 11, 2009, 08:03 AM
some of you guys are going to have hearing problems in the fututre

theotherwaldo
September 11, 2009, 04:23 PM
Yep. But we'll have a future.

DoubleTapDrew
September 11, 2009, 05:14 PM
Why are people assuming ear protection would be the first item you would go for? It's unquestionably an "only if there's time" item. Instead of press checking your gun for the 6th time while holed up and listening to your heart race, throw some decent amplified ears on. The first item without question is firearm.
I'm not 100% sold on the idea, and talking to 911 dispatch would be an issue (calling 911 is another "if there's time" thing), but I'm not against the idea either.
That's just my opinion. Now, I better get back to listening to my tinnitus thanks to years of "toughing it out" when shooting, working on fast cars, blasting music, using power tools, etc...

jakemccoy
September 11, 2009, 05:34 PM
Calling 911 should definitely be up there on the priority list.

Calling 911 is important for legal reasons. If the 911 dispatcher can capture the entire incident on tape, then you should be golden in court if the DA even charges you. One approach is to call 911 and tell the dispatcher that you're putting the phone down on speaker. Whatever happens, definitely call 911 immediately after shooting someone. Do NOT call your lawyer, or anybody else, first. The time line will be forever set in place. If we didn't have to deal with the legal aftermath, then 911 wouldn't be so high on my priority list.

Calling 911 is also important for practical reasons. If an intruder is in my house and my family is safe behind me, then there is nothing else in my house that is worth risking my life for in a clearing. If you're incapacitated while clearing your house, then that probably means your family dies. I will allow the cops to come and do what they do. If violent intruders were in my home, then I would think of my home as being dangerous like the yard at San Quentin State Prison without the guards around.

Let's not forget the home invasion of the Petit family in Connecticut:
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/24/nyregion/24slay.html
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iEym_cK579acqUBys6kL2S1PlEqQD9AJRGFG5

:mad:

iiibdsiil
September 11, 2009, 08:44 PM
When I shot through the floorboard of my car with my 9mm Kahr MK9, I could hear fine immediately after the gunshot. So could the guy sitting next to me. Long story, it's on here somewhere ;)

He was talking on the phone when it happened and had no problems hearing his girlfriend on the other end. It was unexpected to both of us, not sure if that makes a difference or not.

I could also hear fine when I didn't get the muffs on in time at the outdoor range. First time outside like that, you take them off when they call a cease fire. The guy next to me got to firing before I got them back on.

My personal experiences anyways. YMMV.

JohnKSa
September 11, 2009, 10:17 PM
Why are people assuming ear protection would be the first item you would go for?Because without that strawman there's no way to coherently and rationally argue against it....it is repeated exposure to such noises that causes the long term damage.Repeated exposure is definitely worse, but it is absolutely not true that a single incident can't cause long term damage.I dont expect to be taking a time out to put on my muffs before protecting myself...I'll go a step farther. Anyone who "takes a time out to put on their muffs" in a time critical self-defense situation is absolutely barking mad insane.

That's why no one is advocating "taking a time out" to put on hearing protection. Several people ARE advocating putting on good electronic muffs in non-time critical situations (typical bump-in-the-night scenario). Not only could it help protect your hearing should things deteriorate to a shooting, a good set will actually boost your hearing considerably helping you to locate and indentify the source of the noise. In addition, it will eliminate the temporary deafness that some people experience for up to several minutes after firing a shot unprotected.

SharpsDressedMan
September 12, 2009, 12:11 AM
911. Right. It takes less time to arm oneself, assess the situation, grab a flashlight, don a bullet resistent vest, and put on amplified ear protection than it does to dial 911, engage in distracting and lengthy conversation with a dispatcher asking all kinds of questions (and THEN she'll send someone), and waiting for the police to arrive (3-20 minutes, at best). Which one will get you killed first, putting on hearing protection (the kind that allows you to hear but blocks a gunshot), or talking to 911? I'm assuming I am talking to folks on this gun-related board that intend to respond armed, not unarmed people who are relying on the police to be their sole protectors.

.38 Special
September 12, 2009, 12:37 AM
You will not hear the muzzle blast.

The phenomenon is called auditory exclusion, and it happens in the brain, not the ear. Imagine being chased by a bear, and getting a scratch from a thorn while doing it. You won't notice the scratch -- your brain has more important things to do at the moment -- but after you've gotten away from the bear, you're still scratched.

If your ears ring for more than a day some portion of your hearing has been destroyed.

Technically, any ringing at all is a sign of damage.

Yeah, you can still talk to a lot of vets from the service, and they can hear you. They probably fired a few more rounds than you will be in a HD situation.

I see vets at my hearing aid practice every day. Were it not for the U.S. military, I'd probably have to find a different line of work. Or at least sell the Mercedez.

Supersonic crack, come on folks. It is not that loud.

The decibel scale is logarithmic, which is to say that a sound at 10 decibels is 10 times more intense than a sound at zero decibels, a sound at 20 decibels is 100 times more intense than the zero decibel sound, 30 decibels is 1000 times more intense, etc.

The threshold for instantaneous hearing damage is thought to be 120-130 decibels. A gunshot from even a "quiet" cartridge will be 140 decibels, and the "loud" cartridges can exceed 170 decibels.

If you fire an unsuppressed centerfire handgun in an enclosed area you are almost guaranteed to damage your hearing.

it is repeated exposure to such noises that causes the long term damage.

I am always gratified to see such opinions. It assures me that I am in a very steady line of work.

jakemccoy
September 12, 2009, 01:20 AM
911. Right. It takes less time to arm oneself, assess the situation, grab a flashlight, don a bullet resistent vest, and put on amplified ear protection than it does to dial 911, engage in distracting and lengthy conversation with a dispatcher asking all kinds of questions (and THEN she'll send someone), and waiting for the police to arrive (3-20 minutes, at best). Which one will get you killed first, putting on hearing protection (the kind that allows you to hear but blocks a gunshot), or talking to 911? I'm assuming I am talking to folks on this gun-related board that intend to respond armed, not unarmed people who are relying on the police to be their sole protectors.

That's just bad advice. You may not know that you don't have to say a word to the 911 dispatcher in order for the cops to show up. You can dial 911 and put the phone down. I just timed it. It takes about 3 seconds. If you have the time, dialing 911 is definitely the smart thing to do from a legal and practical standpoint. The fact that you called 911 BEFORE you shot someone is a good way to relieve yourself of criminal charges. It presents a strong case of self-defense, just to be sure.

Once again, in case you didn't quite get it yet, you can dial 911 and put the phone down. Assuming you want to just live through the home invasion without playing Superman, a smart action would be to hunker down in your safe room, gun pointed at the door, and not roaming around your house like you're invincible. You're not. I cringe every time I hear someone talk about clearing their house, and the person always says it nonchalantly like they have the advantage over the criminal. You don't.

I encourage you to browse my Youtube channel below and listen to some real home invasions where armed homeowners called 911 before shooting. If you want to make sure you look like Superman in front of your wife and kids, then we are on different wavelengths...good luck.

sohcgt2
September 12, 2009, 02:55 AM
OR... you could just wear hearing protection during your recreational shooting and hunting and not worry about it in a HD or SD situation... it is repeated exposure to such noises that causes the long term damage. Seeing as most of us are unlikely to be in such a situation anyway, much less many of them, I dont expect to be taking a time out to put on my muffs before protecting myself...

Some hearing loss weighed against injury or death, I'll pass on the use of hearing protection just this one time. All those rock concerts I went to as a teen and my recent Audiology exam has all ranges at 5 dbs.
I will suggest to all that you try to avoid holding the muzzle near your ear when you fire indoors. Firing from this position makes sighting difficult and may be more likely to cause hearing damage.

Once again, in case you didn't quite get it yet, you can dial 911 and put the phone down. Assuming you want to just live through the home invasion without playing Superman, a smart action would be to hunker down in your safe room, gun pointed at the door, and not roaming around your house like you're invincible. You're not. I cringe every time I hear someone talk about performing a sweep of their house, and the person always say it nonchalantly like they have the advantage over the criminal. You don't.

I encourage you to browse my Youtube channel below and listen to some real home invasions where armed homeowners called 911 before shooting. If you want to make sure you look like Superman in front of your wife in kids, then we are on different wavelengths...good luck.

This bears repeating. Dial and hang up or dial and don't speak from a land line (no cell phones) and emergency services will be dispatched.
If you do have to shoot an intruder on more than one occasion you may want to consider finding another place to live/work/visit.

chuckusaret
September 12, 2009, 01:40 PM
I would forget the hearing protection, I'd rather be deaf for a second or so after I shot the BG, then fumble around with a set of ear muffs and allow the BG to shoot me. I spent many months in combat as ground pounder, a door gunner and helicopter crew member without hearing protection and as a very old man I never have to ask "what did you say".

SharpsDressedMan
September 12, 2009, 01:47 PM
Jake,
I think we can compromise. I will agree, call 911, and if time permits, answer some questions. If the threat persists, set the phone down, and deal with it until the police come to assist you. I like this, as a time limited statement: " 911, I have a home invasion in progress. I am dressed (fill in the blank), my name is Greg, white male, 50's, and I am armed with a (fill in the blank). The intruder is moving closer and I must go now (put the phone down). You given enough info to the police that they should know you from the bad guy, and you can get on with business at hand.

jakemccoy
September 12, 2009, 02:01 PM
That's exactly what I'm saying. You can do even less than that. The main thing is calling 911 to get that action on the evidence time line. The only thing that matters in court is what you can prove. By calling 911, you take that piece of the puzzle outside of the "here's what I remember" category of evidence. (Meanwhile, getting the cops there is just a good idea all around anyway.) Along the same line of thinking, it wouldn't be a bad idea to start an audio recorder; a video recorder would be even better if possible.

Of course, this preparation all depends on your state. Notice that I'm in California, where there is no Castle Doctrine. However, even in states with a Castle Doctrine, I would want my testimony to be supported by incontrovertible evidence. Otherwise, you're kind of leaving your balls in the hands of the district attorney, hoping she believes your story.

The Lone Haranguer
September 12, 2009, 06:21 PM
An electronic ear muff, which amplifies small sounds but cuts off the big ones, would alleviate concerns about not being able to hear what is going on in the dwelling. My issue is finding the time to put them on in the first place.

indie
September 13, 2009, 09:18 PM
I vote FOR the electronic muffs. If i dont have time for em, i'm still going to have the entryway covered and be ready to go.. Otherwise grab the gun, then grab the muffs


caldwell e-max muffs are very good and can be had for under 30 bucks.

DBR
September 14, 2009, 12:00 AM
I firmly believe in hearing protection whenever it can be used. I'm an older guy who has done a lot of competition shooting as a younger person before hearing protection was well understood. My hearing is compromised but not too bad.

I keep "best quality" electronic protection on top of my Glock at my bedside. It improves my "situational awareness" and protects my hearing for follow up. I consider hearing "preservation" an essential part of self defense.

I use custom ear plugs + electronic muffs for the range.

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