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Old July 27, 2012, 02:49 AM   #51
Al Swearengen
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Fired off 10rds of .357SIG through a compensated P229 Sport with nothing a long time ago. You wouldn't believe how much louder already-painful .357SIG is when half the blast is routed straight up. I got a headache from my skull muscles trying to fold my ears back like a dog.

Oh to be young and stupid again.
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Old July 27, 2012, 03:21 AM   #52
jokester_143
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A couple of times in South Korea where we were told that they would have ear-pro for us, and yet we fired over 600+ round without... Plus a tour in Iraq, equals poor hearing in my right ear...

If I am not looking right at someone, or if they arent on my left side, I usually dont hear them....
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Old July 27, 2012, 10:38 AM   #53
Glenn E. Meyer
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As far as the time perception effects, it's standard in the gun world to say things slow time. Research suggests that it doesn't happen but there it is a later memory effect.

Things do look clearer in the center of your focused vision as the systems responsible for fine detail tune up a bit. Thus, reports like Cirillo (IIRC) saying his sights were crystal clear is probably true.

Auditory exclusion is selective attention effect combined with memory. Your hair cells in the cochlea get fired no matter what you perceive.
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Old July 27, 2012, 06:17 PM   #54
tommyd78
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ever shot without ear protectors?

I forgot when I started getting ringing in my ears if it was after the one time I shot a 357 round, the ringing is always there I'm aware of it but it doesn't really bother me even at sleep. I listened to a lot of loud music and only recently went to see a band and I had foam plugs in. Almost 60 and I still like loud music in the metal category.
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Old July 28, 2012, 08:36 PM   #55
Camar
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I joined the USMC in 1963 and army 12 yrs. later. Retired in 1989. Never wore any ear protection. Never had any until lart 70's or early 80's.
Not practical in combat, I served 2 tours as a Marine infantryman. For incoming artillery supporting fire we used to open our mouths to equalize the pressure. Usually we could not hear much for a few hours after. This is one of the things we had to live with.
I still don't use hearing protection when firing in the open. No big deal. I guess I was raised in a different life style then most of you.
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Old July 28, 2012, 08:54 PM   #56
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I hunt without ear protection. I typically rarely take more than a couple of shots per animal with a rifle most of the time taking only one shot per animal I shoot and then its only one or two animals per day.

When I bird hunt I also don't hunt with hearing protection. I take more shots with the 12 gauge shotgun than I do with my rifle. Ducks - you can make many multiple shots in a day. The same goes for pheasant and grouse hunting.

At the time of hunting I don't notice any ringing or adverse conditions in my ears.

I DO however wear hearing protection whenever I shoot trap, skeet or am on the line practicing with rifles/handguns etc.

I made the mistake once of not wearing hearing protection (I wanted to know what the gun - my 1911 - sounded like without hearing protection) and put two rounds downrange without hearing protection. I won't ever do that again. Thanks to that I had ringing in my ears for nearly 48 hours straight and I felt as though I had water in my ears for a week. Luckily that apparently didn't injure my ears.
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Old July 28, 2012, 09:27 PM   #57
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When shooting a .22LR back in my younger days, I never used hearing protection. Then a .22 pistol. Wow, much different. About then I learned the benefit of using hearing pro, but of course by then it was too late. Lesson learned and I've been a staunch advocate of doubling-up on protection when at the range for well over twenty years, when just using muffs turned out to HURT at .44 magnum levels. Been also the victim of surprise shots by fellow shooters, fumbling with ear pro during commence firing calls, etc. It all hurts, but especially high-power rifles and magnum power pistols. Save what hearing you've got left, guys, at all costs. Please.
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Old July 28, 2012, 10:17 PM   #58
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I used to do it all the time. '53 Army basic training, hearing protection did not exist. Later, aircraft maintainence, same thing.
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Old July 28, 2012, 10:47 PM   #59
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Tinnitus, my constant companion. Too many times without at least one ear plug in while in The Corps. I'm sure live music didn't help either.
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Old July 29, 2012, 03:15 AM   #60
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The only time I don't wear hearing protection is when I'm shooting a .22 rifle. I know I should but it's not much louder than a magnum air rifle and that range of my hearing is probably already gone from years as a mechanic. Anything else though, .22 pistols and up, is always fired with ears on. Beyond the ringing, the physical discomfort of being near gunfire without hearing protection is just too much for me.
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Old July 29, 2012, 04:27 AM   #61
gorin
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I used to have very good hearing, I've been using ear plugs to sleep since 1996. A while back I decided to take care of the issue, shot about 200 rounds from my 2" taurus .38 without ear protection.
I am happy to report that now I can sleep while the lawn people cut the grass under my window. Blessed silence!
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Old July 29, 2012, 04:55 AM   #62
Camar
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Please let me clarify shooting without hearing protection. I do use and HIGHLY recommend using hearing protection when under cover or near buildings. Yes, even the .22 cal.
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Old July 29, 2012, 11:42 AM   #63
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I shoot without hearing protection when doing self defense drills with my 357 magnum, 22LR, 40sw, and 12 gauge every once and a while. Chances are, bad guys wont wait for me to put in my ear plugs before I have to defend myself. I personally think one should be comfortable with the loudness. That is a personal preference only.
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Old July 29, 2012, 11:54 AM   #64
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Went in the Army with perfect hearing,ten years later substantial loss in both ears.Learned two things, don't trust Army earplugs,and double up with foam and ear muffs.
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Old July 29, 2012, 12:33 PM   #65
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I have tinnitus, perhaps from the monster gun racket fending off kamakazis on my carrier during WWII. High frequencies are gone. The VA helped me get good hearing aids.

Once in a while I'll start down toward the paper target without my protection and let one off. Oh, I forgot. I turn around and go put on those cans.

Save as much as you can. When it's gone, it's gone.
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Old July 29, 2012, 12:44 PM   #66
Dragline45
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Quote:
I shoot without hearing protection when doing self defense drills with my 357 magnum, 22LR, 40sw, and 12 gauge every once and a while. Chances are, bad guys wont wait for me to put in my ear plugs before I have to defend myself. I personally think one should be comfortable with the loudness. That is a personal preference only.
NOTE: NO ONE DO THIS IF YOU VALUE YOUR HEARING.

Seriously dude what are you thinking? A single .357 round indoors caused me to suffer high frequency hearing loss and left me with tinnitus in my left ear. Chances are bad guys wont wait for you to put your ear plugs on like you said but keep it up and you are never going to hear them coming. Do a little research on the inner ear and how certain DB levels affect it. You may think your self defense drills are doing you good but in reality it's doing you more harm than anything. Keep practicing your drills, but wear ear protection.

Quote:
I personally think one should be comfortable with the loudness.
Due to auditory exclusion chances are you wont hear the shots, you will be too focused on the target, but just because you don't register the shot does not mean it wont damage your ears. Often times officers in shootings think they fired 3 or 4 rounds only to find out they fired 10.

But seriously, what your doing is causing damage to your ears whether you know it or not. It may not have caused major damage yet, but you are slowly killing the auditory hairs in your ear, and its going to take just one right shot to put them over the top. If you value your hearing stop the foolishness.

Last edited by Dragline45; July 29, 2012 at 07:47 PM.
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Old July 29, 2012, 04:27 PM   #67
Stevie-Ray
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Quote:
I shoot without hearing protection when doing self defense drills with my 357 magnum, 22LR, 40sw, and 12 gauge every once and a while. Chances are, bad guys wont wait for me to put in my ear plugs before I have to defend myself. I personally think one should be comfortable with the loudness.
Wow. Seems akin to slicing yourself up just in case your home invader has a knife so you can know what it feels like.

As was said, when it's gone, it's gone. Don't help it along. You can complain about how loud it was afterward if you're lucky.
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Old July 29, 2012, 05:07 PM   #68
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I shot .308 competitively for my battalion, without hearing protection. Today I am mostly deaf in my left ear (left-handed). A buddy forgot to put his plugs in (I fault his guides) when firing at a mulie in a box canyon - think he used a 7MM Rem Mag or 300 H&H Mag - 20 years later he still has tinnitus and has to put cotton in his ears when he is in a noisy crowded room.

When people ask me for my personal opinion about in-home defense, I recommend against .32 Magnum, .357 Magnum and .44 Magnum (and their cousins) because of the sharpness, volume and high pitch of the report. I'm not a scientist and haven't yet read all the replies in the thread, but the reason I like .45s is the lower-hertz report, if that's what it is called. Velocity presumably plays a large part in all this, but that's for the scientists or engineers to discuss. Obviously, when it is hitting the fan you shoot what you have and you almost certainly won't be wearing plugs, but planning for a real event should be able to mitigate hearing damage to some degree.

At indoor ranges in particular, I never remove my ear muffs unless I visibly confirm that every other lane is cold. Otherwise, I just shout and or mouth or signal what I want to say to whomever is with me. An option, probably already mentioned, is expensive electronic earmuffs that "shut down" when the report of a cartridge hits them but that allow normal voice-level sounds through otherwise. The cost is relative. Good hearing aids begin at $1,500 each. High-end "expensive" electronic muffs are waaay cheaper than that.

If you want to be an eternal optimist, losing your hearing means you can't hear very much nagging, either.
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Old July 29, 2012, 05:10 PM   #69
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I spent several years in a research lab whose main focus was investigating the effects of noise on hearing. We did lab work using various animal models, and low level temporary threshold shift experiments on humans. I also read a lot of the historical literature. How many shots does it take to cause permanent damage to your hearing? One.
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Old July 29, 2012, 06:07 PM   #70
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Quote:
I personally think one should be comfortable with the loudness. That is a personal preference only
As someone who has lost some of my high frequency hearing already due to age, loud music, machinery sounds, and gunfire... I personally think that is one of the most ridiculous things I've ever heard.

Enjoy the tinnitus when it sets in, as it surely will.

Galileo probably thought staring at the sun would get him comfortable with the brightness... he was blind for the last decade of his life.
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Old July 29, 2012, 08:01 PM   #71
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Sure have. I've done a couple doozies, once was shooting some full tilt boogie 44 mags from a Redhawk and got the bright idea to shoot prone out of the back of my truck, first shot no protection .
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Old July 29, 2012, 08:23 PM   #72
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I grew up shooting small rifle without hearing protection, then spent 4 yrs. in the Marine Corps. I was in artillery and we never had any ear protection. I hurt my ears a couple of times shooting 357 indoors but it seemed to recover. I never shoot anything now without hearing protection.
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Old July 30, 2012, 05:58 AM   #73
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Yes I have. Don't do it, tinnitus isn't enjoyable.
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Old July 30, 2012, 07:50 AM   #74
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When I went through basic training in 1965, they gave us ear plugs. But I discovered that if I used them, I couldn't hear range commands. So I didn't use them. Later I took artillery training and I'm sure they issued ear plugs because the style was to wear them under your shoulder strap on your field jacket (this would have been November-December). They came in a little plastic container with a chain loop. I don't remember if I wore them or not but I don't think the sound of a 105mm howitizer was any worse than an M14, provided you were directly behind the gun. Other large weapons were very bad.

I also remember taking a hearing test in basic. You sat in this booth with ear phones on and you were supposed to press a button when you heard a sound. But the sounds, as I recall, were pretty much like a ringing in your ears. It didn't seem like a very good test to me.
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Old July 30, 2012, 01:52 PM   #75
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Hm... I didn't think my personal preference would have others labeling me as an idiot. My post was a response to the OP, and I made it clear that this is a personal preference. I do not encourage others to shoot without hearing protection.
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