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Forum topic by azlogger posted 12-20-2013 05:37 PM 1502 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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37 posts in 1616 days

12-20-2013 05:37 PM

Topic tags/keywords: hearing protection

Hi. I have a small woodshop, CNC router…need hearing protection! I don’t like to leave the shop for several minutes—leaving the CNC unwatched—just to talk on phone. So I’ve been using the earbuds that came with my iPhone, with some cheap earmuffs over top. But this is very uncomfortable after a half hour of use or so. I’m not planning to listen to music with them…can’t concentrate on my work as well. I don’t want to spend over ~$100 max. Thanks in advance!

-- Who needs PLANS??!! Be original!!

11 replies so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

29226 posts in 2335 days

#1 posted 12-20-2013 06:06 PM

For me, the phone goes in the pocket. I check it occasionally. But the ringer is shut off. Any distraction can cause loss of fingers. I do not listen to music in the shop. I believe it is necessary to know what the equipment sounds like. The main time I wear hearing protection is using the planer. It’s a screamer.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Loren's profile


10385 posts in 3645 days

#2 posted 12-20-2013 06:58 PM

If you’re looking to be able to pipe in an audio signal,
in-the-ear headsets isolate sound very well, as long
as they are the type that comes with the covers
in different sizes. You’ll have to experiment to figure
out what size works best for you.

They are the best hearing protection I’ve tried actually,
but I can only wear them for an hour or two before I
start to get annoyed. It’s important to reach over
your head and pull your earlobe up as you insert
the earplug. This helps them seat in the canal properly.

View OggieOglethorpe's profile


1276 posts in 2107 days

#3 posted 12-20-2013 07:31 PM

I like THESE with the Skull Screw foam tips when I want to listen to an audio signal in a loud environment.

I’ve been using these for years, around race cars, power equipment, taxiing aircraft, with the older silicone tips, and I liked them. With the Skull Screws, they’re even better! The best comparison is a good 31dB foam plug, with sound. I can set the audio volume extremely low, and still hear it clearly. They’re also a lot more comfortable than muffs, especially in sweaty conditions.

They aren’t audiophile quality sound, but they’re good enough, and excellent with voice.

The tips are sold separately, as you’ll need to replace them regularily.

View Gerald Thompson's profile

Gerald Thompson

937 posts in 2232 days

#4 posted 12-20-2013 08:20 PM

In order to attenuate sound the waves, which are energy, have to pass through a properly designed product to absorb the energy. High dB sound waves could be compared to sticking a garden hose in one’s ear. Iris energy pure and simple. Look at the ear muff specs and see how much sound is attenuated.
When a person is hard of hearing 60 they will whish they had been more careful 20.

-- Jerry

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4929 posts in 3958 days

#5 posted 12-20-2013 08:28 PM

I use the Peltor OPTIME 105 muffs for in-shop and mower/string trimmer work.
Check out the specs. They work, and are not uncomfortable.


View Knothead62's profile


2584 posts in 2958 days

#6 posted 12-20-2013 09:29 PM

You can increase the noise reduction by adding foam ear plugs under the muffs.

View azlogger's profile


37 posts in 1616 days

#7 posted 12-21-2013 01:33 AM

Thanks for the replies so far! I forgot to mention—and maybe someone can say what’s wrong—But I have never been able to use earplugs. They just won’t go in, if I do manage to get them in they don’t seal. I would be willing to wear in-the-ear type if I could. In the meantime, I’ll check on what Bill White uses.

-- Who needs PLANS??!! Be original!!

View MJCD's profile


541 posts in 2369 days

#8 posted 12-21-2013 02:15 AM

Pro Ears Ultra 33 – I’ve been using them for years – and the company sent me a new pair when the headband broke – after about 5 years of wear and tear.

I’m with Monte – 100%. I love a wide variety of music; however, the shop is my time, and I need all of my fingers, I don’t want a board being kicked-back from the TS – hitting me where the sun doesn’t shine, and the router is one powerful indiscriminate device. I’m not smart enough (the Gerald Ford syndrome, perhaps) to listen to a symphony or “OneDirection”, and plan and execute my project.

-- Lead By Example; Make a Difference

View SuperCubber's profile


1026 posts in 2282 days

#9 posted 12-21-2013 04:29 AM

Azlogger, I used to have that same problem, but it was a matter if necessity for my job to figure it out. After pulling my ears in all different directions and pointing the ear plug in all different direction, I finally found the right combination. I think everyone’s ears may be slightly different inside, but usually you have to insert them at an upward angle, while pulling up on your ear with the other hand. An important step is to make sure you roll them up as tight as you can before you try to put them in. When you get the right spot, they will slip right in.

I always use them in the shop. They are cheap, easy to source, unbreakable, and more comfortable than most muffs.

One more note, not all ear plugs are created equal. Some are bigger than others and some dot compress as much. If you need specifics, or want to know my favorite brand, I’d be happy to give you that info. Shoot, I could even send you a few pairs to try out!

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

View Pimzedd's profile


602 posts in 4140 days

#10 posted 12-21-2013 06:40 PM

You might try the 3M TEKK WorkTunes Hearing Protector. It is an AM/FM radio with hearing protection. It has a stereo phone jack that an MP3 player can plug in to. I have used one for several years in the shop. Good ear protection. When working on something that does not require 100 % attention, I listen to the radio.

-- Bill - Mesquite, TX --- "Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.” John Sarge , timber framer and blacksmith instructor at Tillers International school

View BentheViking's profile


1782 posts in 2561 days

#11 posted 12-22-2013 03:16 AM

I use a pair of wraparound headphones. They stick in the ears to provide a good sound and comfort, but the plastic wraparound keeps them on my ears so they don’t fall out. Then on top of those I use a pair of gun rated earmuffs which pretty much keeps all the sound out so I can still listen to music while I’m working

-- It's made of wood. Real sturdy.--Chubbs Peterson

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