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223 vs 308 w/o ear protection?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by herbu, Jan 14, 2007.

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  1. herbu

    herbu Member

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    Don't want to start a 223 vs 308 fight. Just gave my 30-30, (my only rifle other than .22s), to my nephew. Lots of shotguns and handguns, but figure I "need" a rifle for the same reason your mama always told you to wear clean underwear... because you never know. :rolleyes:

    Live in the country/woods. One day may need to grab the rifle out of the rack and shoot something w/o time to put on ear protection. How does the "ring your ears" factor compare between 223 & 308? Specifically between AR 223 and Browning BLR lever-action 308, (just 'cause the BLR is purty)?

    Figure the 223 is quieter, but semi-auto is louder than lever. How about 1 round vs 10? Ringing ears is better than dead, but if threat is wild dog, coyote, or just a deer, ;) , rather than a home invasion, would not be life threatening. If they get in or real close to the house, would use aforementioned shotguns or .45s. Would use rifle to "hold them off" at the treeline ~50 yards out if I could.

    Is there a huge difference in the noise?

    Thanks,
     
  2. Outlander1

    Outlander1 member

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    Shooting eaither with out protection will cause damage to your hearing .......that will last for ever !!!

    DO NOT SHOOT WITH OUT HEARING PROTECTION .

    Its that simple . Once the damage is done it can not be un dun .
     
  3. 1911 guy

    1911 guy Member

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    completely subjective observation.

    To my ears, the .223 rings my ears worse than a .308. Given the chance, wear plugs or muffs with either, though. I think it has something to do with the sharpness of the .223 report.
     
  4. foob

    foob Member

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    Put your muffs next to your rifle, if you grab it you wear your muffs. If there's no time, it doesn't matter whether it's .223 or .308, gotta live with it.
     
  5. 308win

    308win Member

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    My Mini14 has a sharper report than my 308 (heavy barrel and longer barrel). The 308 seems deeper and longer duration with less of a spike. .223 = POW, .308 = PHOOM. Not technical terms but the best I can do. The Mini is definitly more unpleasant than the BDL. Recoil seems about the same but the .308 weighs approximately 15lbs with scope and the .223 is a rapid short duration punch, the .308 is a longer duration shove.

    I don't target shoot either without ears; shoot varmints without ears but these are typically one shot at a time deals.
     
  6. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    Ditto. The .308 is a more of a boom than a crack. That was one of the things I liked about it in my youth when we did not have sense enough to wear ear protection. Yes, my right ear rings most of the time. I am glad it is not worse.

    This is a very good description 308win
     
  7. RH822

    RH822 Member

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    Agreed, and a very good description.

    As for the hearing protection. For KNOWN 4-legged pest control, grab the muffs. But for UNKNOWN pests or 2-legged pests, forget the muffs, hearing whats coming up behind you is far more important and worth risking a little ringing in your ears. IMO deaf is better than dead.

    RH
     
  8. Mike128

    Mike128 Member

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    I will mention that barrel length seems to play a part. My 16inch AR 223 seems louder/more piercing than my 22 inch bolt 308. I've shot the 308 without muffs (deer hunting) a couple of times and never noticed the noise or ringing afterwards. (I do usuall wear plugs when shooting)
    One shot of the 223 didn't make my ears ring but was very unpleasant. I wouldn't want to do that again unless I have to.
     
  9. Quintin Likely

    Quintin Likely Member

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    Either one isn't a good idea without hearing protection unless it's absolutely necessary.
     
  10. herbu

    herbu Member

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    Thanks guys

    Exactly what I was looking for. Thanks! I understand the need for ear protection, and use it always when playing. But the rifle I'm pondering now will go in the rack on my wall for quick/easy/necessary access.

    The rack is the old Kmart, (before Walmart or Target existed), 3 long gun horizontal type. Everybody has/had one. On my bedroom wall. It carries a 10-22, Mossberg 500 w/ 000 buck, and now a .22mag bolt Marlin since I gave away the M94. Need to replace the 22mag with something. Won't be for playing. Will be when I need to grab something quickly and the 22, 12ga, or 1911 aren't appropriate. In other words, like the 30-30, it will likely sit in the rack, get dusted every couple weeks, cleaned every couple months, and rarely fired. Quit hunting a number of years ago.

    But if I ever DO need to fire it, I don't want it to hurt like my 357 Python. (I bought it new ~40 years ago before ear protection had been invented. Hot factory loads actually hurt, and my ears would ring for 2-3 days. Used to stuff my ears with toilet paper, not out of wisdom but to avoid the pain.) Makes it real hard to focus on the situation.

    So I'm hearing from ya'll that a closed 308 might be more conducive to follow-up attention than a semiauto 223, if not wearing ear protection. Was a little surprised about the "recoil seems about the same" comment. Not what I expected.

    Thanks again.
     
  11. k31

    k31 Member

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    Herbu, the mechanism of hearing loss arises from trauma to stereocilia of the cochlea, the principal fluid filled structure of the inner ear. The pinna (visible portion of the ear) combined with the middle ear amplifies sound pressure levels by a factor of twenty, so that extremely high sound pressure levels arrive in the cochlea, even from moderate atmospheric sound stimuli. The cilial damage is known to be cumulative and can be irreversible The most recent research indicates that high noise levels create elevated levels of reactive oxygen species in the inner ear which interfere with the regenerative process for cochlear cilia repair. This research shows why high noise levels have differing effects over a given population, and lead to a possible preventative strategy of adequate antioxidant intake.

    That a hunter "doesn't hear the shot because his adreniline is pumping" is a fallacy. Adrenaline temporarily narrows the blood vessels and the "percieved" audio absence of the shot itself does not dimish the factual damage to the inner ear.

    Wanting and using a rifle near at hand for the 4 legged intruders isn't a good justification for not also having ear plugs next to the rifle.......... and as for the "two-legged" variety...... how about a show of hands of all those who have actually shot one of the two-legged variety.

    k31
     
  12. MechAg94

    MechAg94 Member

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    You might try the electronic muffs. I hear they filter out the high db noise while letting you hear the normal noises. I guess I need to get a pair also.

    The only rifle I have deliberately shot without ear plugs is .22 LR with a single shot or levergun, but even that is loud enough for damage and I wouldn't recommend it.
     
  13. k31

    k31 Member

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    And with all due respect to the forum............

    I carry, as do my wife and children. Both of my children have been put through firearms self defence classes held by a LEA in our county, but I had an absolute prerequisite for them.
    They were required to read two books before commencing classes. "In the Gravest Extreme", Ayoob, and "No Second Place Winners", Jordan.

    Talking about shooting a two-legged variety and doing it without spending the rest of your life in prison are two very distinct things.

    Any thoughts from you gents on this subject?

    k31
     
  14. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    Higher-pitched noise does more damage than lower pitch. This is why there are fewer bass players with tinitus than guitar players.

    But honetly, both of these rifles are plenty dangerous to your hearing. Like someone else said, when you are fighting for your life, you can't deprive yourself of any sensory advantage.

    When I shoot .22 or shotguns outside, I cheat sometimes, but never anything heavier than that.

    I would recommend "In the Gravest Extreme" and also the most recent Combat Handgunnery guide by Ayoob. I have loaned mine to several people who want to get into the lifestyle. Every time you put on a gun, you must look yourself in the mirror and ask if you are prepared to act decisively and permanently, and deal with the consequences. (There have been times I have been absent-minded or distracted, so I left it home.) Decide NOW, that you would rather be judged by 12 than carried by six.

    Just because there will be legal issues whenever someone is shot doesn't mean you will go to prison. Just be prepared for the process of letting your LAWYER get you out of trouble. (Meaning, KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT.)
     
  15. herbu

    herbu Member

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    K31,
    I studied Spanish, Latin and Hebrew in school, and am learning Mandarin Chinese now. Not exactly sure what language you're speaking. :eek: But I think I understand and agree with everything you said. Shooting any of my guns w/o ear protection is a remote possibility. So is a home invasion, yet I keep a loaded 12ga and 1911. So is an assault away from home, yet I have a carry permit and use it. So is a house fire, yet I have insurance.

    It is extremely unlikely I will ever need to shoot the rifle at all without proper preparation. But since I am getting one specifically for that eventuality, it seemed prudent to ask. I am currently prepared for a problem inside the house. I'm ready for a problem in the yard. I'm not really prepared for a problem in the treeline 40-50 yards out. (At least, that's the excuse I'm using with the boss... and yes, I'm running out of plausible excuses! ;) )

    Oh, one more excuse is that I'm afraid purchase of black rifles may be prohibited soon, and I might want to get one while I can. So I'm thinking about a SOCOM 16 or Scout, maybe an AR. Saw the BLR kinda by accident and think it's purty. So I have different agendas, but whatever other "need" my choice fills, it still comes back to "what if... 50 yard... quick grab" since that's my original excuse.

    "Quick grab" precludes ear plugs. And like RH822 said, in this unlikely event I want to be able to hear the leaves rustle, twigs snap and hammer cock.

    Thanks again.
     
  16. 308win

    308win Member

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    Keep in mind that my recoil comment was based on a 15lb 308 versus a 6-7lb or so 223. Weight will make a lot of difference in how the recoil is 'felt'.
     
  17. 30Cal

    30Cal Member

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    I've got a set of electronic muffs that I spent $69 on. I can hear better with them on.

    Ty
     
  18. WinchesterAA

    WinchesterAA Member

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    have gone nightcrawler hunting with my AK and my friend had an AR-15 (.223)


    I shot the first time (without protection, gotta be able to hear it before you light it up)


    anywho.. my AK is a baby, not incredibly loud at all. His ar-15? wow.. that's the sharpest loud noise I've ever heard besides the m1 simulation charge that retard detonated a couple of 4th's ago in the middle of a parkinglot at the lake. I sympathized heavily for the people in the immediate vicinity that were on the ground crying.

    I was behind him and to the right some though, and he had a muzzle brake.

    so YMMV.
     
  19. Prince Yamato

    Prince Yamato Member

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    I second/third/whatever the notion that an AR is louder than an AK or a .308. It has that sharp "crack". Granted, all three are loud, but the AR is just higher pitched.
     
  20. Mike128

    Mike128 Member

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    Forgot to metion the recoil. The AR has almost no recoil and I can stay on a man sized target with ease. I recently shot a M1A match and even the recoil wasn't bad I had more trouble staying on target. I am also planning on getting a SOCOM or Scout to complement my AR and bolt gun. Be warned that a gun with a muzzlebrake the noise will be much louder.
    The AR isn't louder just sharper. I assume that is due to the barrel being closer and pressure curve. A 16 inch 308 will also be louder than a 22 inch 308.
     
  21. pcosmar

    pcosmar member

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    The sharp report of a 223 will set your ears to ringing. Though hearing protection is important, hearing what is going on around you is also important.
    Many years ago, as a young man in the Army, I fired both the 308 (M60) and 223 (M16). On the range we wore ear plugs, during live fire team and squad training we did not. We had to comunicate back and forth. Several hundred rounds from an M16 will ring your ears all day.
    I am almost 50 now,my hearing may not be perfect but it's still good.
    In a home defence situation, don't even waste the time to think about ear plugs.
    At the range and in practice use them.
    And yes, the 223 is worse.
     
  22. 1911JMB

    1911JMB Member

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    Barrel length and to some extent powder. That is what makes the difference. A 7.5" AR barrel will be a lot louder than a 22" M1A barrel, and a 12" FAL barrel will be a lot louder than a 24" AR barrel
     
  23. richardschennberg

    richardschennberg Member

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    1. Get amplified earmuffs or earplugs. You will be able to hear wildlife and NON-TARGETS (people, dogs, farm animals) better.
    2. If you don't need a military rifle but just want to use ammo that has many choices and good prices, get a gun with a long barrel (24-32") and no muzzle brake (or adjustable muzzle brake that can be fully closed. The longer barrel does two things: the pressure at the muzzle will be lower; the muzzle will be further from your ears. Muzzle brakes are very noisy so you don't want one if you want to keep the decibels to a minimum.
    Richard
    Schennberg.com
     
  24. 762X39

    762X39 Member

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    what noise, I don't hear anything...

    The sound of a 223 versus a 308 may have more to do with bullet velocity than anything else. The higher the velocity the more pronounced the "crack" as the bullet breaks the sound barrier. A 308 may be more felt (concussion) than heard. I use a pair of electronic muffs cause they work well and I can hear range commands. In the case of last resort, I can live with hearing damage but dead is forever.
     
  25. DoubleTapDrew

    DoubleTapDrew Member

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    I don't have a .308 yet but my 7mm-08 (.308 necked down to 7mm) seems to mirror what others have said, more of a boom, while my 16" AR has a crack that will give your ears a high pitched ring for a while.
    When actually shooting at something like an animal (no matter how many legs), I don't notice either of them and don't seem to have ringing afterwards (although I have no doubts it probably still does damage) but at the range it'll ring your bell good (pun intended)!
     
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