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Mar 25th, 2012
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Hearing damage for firearms and other sources #7212396
06/30/18 03:39 PM
06/30/18 03:39 PM
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I've lost a good bit of my hearing over the years and have been researching the causes for it (other than old age!). This is what I've collected from other forums and the internet. If you have information to add to this, please do so.

Noise levels of different firearms and other sources

Facts on noise levels:
1. Decibels measure sound pressure and are logarithmic. That means that only a 3db increase almost doubles sound pressure, a 6db increase quadruples sound pressure, etc.
2. Gradual hearing loss may occur after prolonged exposure to 90 decibels or above.
3. Exposure to 100 decibels for more than 15 minutes can cause hearing loss.
4. Exposure to 110 decibels for more than a minute can cause permanent hearing loss.
5. At 140 dBA noise causes immediate injury to almost any unprotected ear.
6. There is also the more extreme Ďacoustic traumaí, which is an immediate loss of hearing after a sudden, exceptionally loud noise such as an explosion.

Comparative noise levels and length of time for damage to occur:
Jet engine taking off 140 dB Instant damage
Thunder/Ambulance siren 119 dB 3 minutes
Hammer drill 113 dB 15 minutes
Chain saw/Earphones/Concert 110 dB 30 minutes
Bull Dozer 105 dB 1 hour
Tractor/Power tools 96 dB 4 hours
Hairdryer/lawnmower 90 dB 8 hours

Noise levels of firearms:
.22 caliber rifle 130dB
.223, 55GR. Commercial load 18" barrel 155.5dB
.243 in 22" barrel 155.9dB
.30-30 in 20" barrel 156.0dB.
7mm Magnum in 20" barrel 157.5dB.
.308 in 24" barrel 156.2dB.
.30-06 in 24" barrel 158.5dB. In 18" barrel 163.2dB.
.375 18" barrel with muzzle brake 170 dB.
.410 Bore 28" barrel 150dB. 26" barrel 150.25dB. 18" barrel 156.30dB.
20 Gauge 28" barrel 152.50dB. 22" barrel 154.75dB.
12 Gauge 28" barrel 151.50dB. 26" barrel 156.10dB. 18" barrel 161.50dB.
.25 ACP 155.0 dB.
.32 LONG 152.4 dB.
.32 ACP 153.5 dB.
.380 157.7 dB.
9mm 159.8 dB.
.38 S&W 153.5 dB.
.38 Spl 156.3 dB.
.357 Magnum 164.3 dB.
.41 Magnum 163.2 dB.
.44 Spl 155.9 dB.
.45 ACP 157.0 dB.
.45 COLT 154.7 dB.

Properly fitted earplugs or muffs reduce noise 15 to 30 dB. The better earplugs and muffs are approximately equal in sound reductions, although earplugs are better for low frequency noise and earmuffs for high frequency noise.

Using muffs and plugs together: Take the higher of the two and add 5 dB. 30 plug with 20 muff gives an effective NRR of 35.

If you are shooting by yourself, with plugs and muffs on, you get to shoot up to a thousand rounds without damage (louder ammo/gun and the allowable drops by a factor of 5). Shoot with other people and you have to add all the rounds shot cumulatively (10 people shoot 100 rounds and everybody's done for the day; toss a handcannon or 30 cal rifle in and you're back down to 200 rounds cumulative). If you shoot on an indoor range then all the rounds fired while you are on the range go into your total. So you can see that it doesn't take very long on a range to have a thousand rounds popped off around you.

Don't forget about bone conduction of concusive sound waves. The mastoid bone will transmit the sound vibrations directly to your inner ear where the cochlea and the hearing nerves reside. Constant exposure to these kinds of concusive sound waves, ie: 50 BMG, industrial heavy machinery, will result in the degradation of your hearing quality. Even with ear muffs, bone conduction is a big factor in hearing.

Last edited by mikei; 06/30/18 04:15 PM.
Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212408
06/30/18 03:57 PM
06/30/18 03:57 PM
Joined: Dec 2008
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Wolfe City, TX
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Yet the federal government makes us jump through hoops to get suppressors.



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Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212420
06/30/18 04:15 PM
06/30/18 04:15 PM
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Mason, TX
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Yep! Jump through hoops, takes forever, and shakes you down for some coin for your stamp. THEN you can buy an expensive suppressor (the cost to build them can't be more than 50-60 bucks) and you can finally get on with it. Maddening.

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212430
06/30/18 04:35 PM
06/30/18 04:35 PM
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How bout a 240g machine gun? I know I have hearing loss from them.

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212460
06/30/18 05:27 PM
06/30/18 05:27 PM
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Fort Worth
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Next episode: recoil effects on vision (retinal dettachment)

bang


I smell Bacon
Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212477
06/30/18 05:45 PM
06/30/18 05:45 PM
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Holly Lake Ranch Tx.
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I have had them both.

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212596
06/30/18 08:48 PM
06/30/18 08:48 PM
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Laser to re attach retinal detachment is the worst pain I have ever experienced!! Like having an ice pic driven through your eye and out the back of your head! I have had it done 4 times. Told DR to strap me in the chair!

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212764
07/01/18 01:40 AM
07/01/18 01:40 AM
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Interesting to see where the 41 rated, made the mistake of shooting one without hearing protection and it was partially inside the vehicle. I knew the moment I pulled the trigger I'd done damage. What led to this was a coyotes crossing the road and I was in my company car, instead of getting out I rolled down the passenger window and shot it from the driver side.

One I don't see on the list is the 30 Carbine, that's another one that will ring your bell.


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Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212765
07/01/18 01:41 AM
07/01/18 01:41 AM
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Yup. It's a noisemaker out of a Ruger Blackhawk for sure.




I'm here to give and receive knowledge, not affirmation or adoration. If you don't like it, mierda dura. Intellectual honesty is not for fragile egos.
Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7212965
07/01/18 12:42 PM
07/01/18 12:42 PM
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105 Howitzer?

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7213104
07/01/18 04:14 PM
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Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7213714
07/02/18 01:03 PM
07/02/18 01:03 PM
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We used to site guns in at my grandpa's farm without ear plugs. Now I wont start a tractor, lawn mower, weed eater, chain saw etc. without ear plugs. I also quit driving hwy trips with the windows down, just too much noise.


It's hell eatin em live
Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7213724
07/02/18 01:12 PM
07/02/18 01:12 PM
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I have tinnitus bad just a perpetual ringing in my ears. Can only hear it when it's quiet though. I can't really sleep at night without the air conditioning on or some kind of ambient noise. Otherwise I just sit and have this buzzing noise in my ears drives me bananas. I won't shoot anything that isn't suppressed or I have really good ear pro on. I did it a lot growing up and as a young adult. Paying for it now.


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I dig the CHODE.

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: redchevy] #7213761
07/02/18 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted By: redchevy
We used to site guns in at my grandpa's farm without ear plugs. Now I wont start a tractor, lawn mower, weed eater, chain saw etc. without ear plugs. I also quit driving hwy trips with the windows down, just too much noise.


Thatís a good lesson to learn at a younger age. Most wait until they have some level of hearing loss if they ever learn at all.

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7213787
07/02/18 02:29 PM
07/02/18 02:29 PM
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I am only 32 but unfortunately already have some amount of hearing loss. One of the reasons I don't like bars or concerts anymore, with the background noise I just cant understand people well.

On the other hand my wife has perfect hearing and in the woods etc. I hear all kinds of stuff she never hears lol.


It's hell eatin em live
Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7213808
07/02/18 02:53 PM
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I have a bit of tinnitus, I believe, but it just doesn't bother me. What DOES bother me is difficulty in hearing and understanding speech in noisy places, like redchevy. I usually end up feeling left out of conversations in those circumstances, and I tend to try and avoid such gatherings.

I never worked on drilling rigs, but I know a few who have. I've been told that the unchanging sounds are loud, but sleep is possible, and that's not too hard to imagine having slept plenty on propeller-driven aircraft. I've also been told that you get so used to the sound of the rig that the smallest change in the sound is very noticeable. My ex-brother-in-law would tell me he could hear a pin drop. Exaggeration, maybe...but I get the idea.

When my grandfather was alive I watched hundreds of football games with him. One afternoon during a game my grandmother walked into the room, stood in front of the TV, and yammered at him about some BS for about five minutes. He had learned to tune her out after 50 years...and she ended up storming out of the room after losing her temper and calling him a deaf dirty old man, or some such, and that he had better get a hearing aid. A few moments later I asked him if he had ever considered getting a hearing aid. He said "why in HELL would I want a g****m hearing aid???" as he stubbed out his cigarette with great force. I fully understood the point.




I'm here to give and receive knowledge, not affirmation or adoration. If you don't like it, mierda dura. Intellectual honesty is not for fragile egos.
Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7213825
07/02/18 03:07 PM
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A couple years ago, I started wearing ear plugs for nearly everything. Didn't realize it was such a major issue til I started hearing older folks talk about all the stuff they didn't use protection for and how they can't hear anymore.

I'm like redchevy - 33 years old and already have trouble hearing in places with background noise. It annoys my wife. But hopefully this will be the end of it since I use plugs all the time now.

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7214477
07/03/18 12:23 PM
07/03/18 12:23 PM
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When shooting unsuppressed or around others, I always double up: Peltor-Tep100 and ProMag Tac Gold. Not the most comfortable setup but gives me the highest NRR while still retaining good amplification (ProMags donít have great volume). When shooting suppressed, I use my Peltor 500 with the gel inserts. Lower NRR but much more comfortable. No desire to lose the hearing I have left.

Re: Hearing damage for firearms and other sources [Re: mikei] #7214776
07/03/18 05:46 PM
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I am almost totally deaf in my left ear and quite a bit of loss in my right ear, however mine is due to work. Did a lot of testing and repair on very high db and frequency military items. It destroyed my hearing in the left ear. it was the ear that was closest to source. I wear hearing aids in both ears but very little help in the left. Wife and I were sitting in 4x6 stand hog hunting when aid in my left ear beeped twice to tell me battery was low. My wife turned to me and asked "did you hear 2 shots?" I told her it was not shots, it was aid beeping for a new battery.


Long story short USE EAR PROTECTION WHEN IN ALL NOISEY SITUATIONS!!!!!







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