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Thread: Ear Muffs for Router Use

  1. #1

    Ear Muffs for Router Use

    Looking for suggestions for hearing protection when using loud machines (especially the routers)? Much appreciated. Vince

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2021
    Location
    Columbia MO and Howard County MO
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    1,418
    Yes to ear muffs! Or ear plugs. Ear plugs on a yoke have been my choice for a while. They hang around your neck and are there when you need them. Ear muffs stay looking nice and do not scare girls and kids with the yucky ear wax that builds up on plugs.
    Best Regards, Maurice

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Location
    West Central Illinois
    Posts
    160
    Worktunes ear muffsby 3m. NRR is good and can bluetooth my cell phone

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    SoCal
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    I can't use plugs and so use Peltor or comparable. I have 4 or 5 scattered around the shop.
    "Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups." - George Carlin

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    In the foothills of the Sandia Mountains
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    16,134
    https://www.amazon.com/3M-Peltor-Ove...%2C129&sr=8-38

    I don't turn on my CNC router without them.
    Please help support the Creek.


    Where we have strong emotions, we're liable to fool ourselves.
    - Carl Sagan


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2021
    Location
    Redmond, OR
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    467
    I use the same Peltor electronic muffs that I use at the shooting range. I can hear until the router is turned on then the muffs cut out like they are supposed to when a shot is fired.

    Ear plugs can be a little easier if you are also wearing glasses and a dust mask. In that case I prefer the ear plugs like these:

    2022-09-26_223332.jpg

    I always know where they are (around my neck) and I can put them on quickly with one hand. I like them better than individual ear plugs because they are a lot faster and easier to put on and take off.
    Last edited by Michael Schuch; 09-27-2022 at 2:45 AM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2022
    Location
    Tracy, CA
    Posts
    181
    I personally do not like the earplug type devices. I tried out several ear muffs last year when I had a need for a large sanding project. Basically, you get what you pay for. The cheaper ones (i.e. $13-20) are crap that's made from vinyl and uncomfortable padding and such. The 3M Peltor variety are actually pretty comfortable (I got a Peltor Sport). However, the Peltor create a very tight seal against your head and this can introduce air pressure against your ears which can actually be uncomfortable over time (i.e. longer than 5 minutes). Some people are more sensitive to this than others.

    The absolutely most comfortable set that I tried was the ProEars Ultra Pro full size ear muffs. These are extremely comfortable and the leather covers will actually breath to equalize the air pressure against your ears. For sound blocking, they perform about 98% as good as the 3M Peltor.

    I also have the ProEars Pro Mag Gold, which is the electronic version of the Ultra Pro. These are excellent as well if you want some sound to be passed through.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    7,280
    I keep foamies in my pocket, and use them whenever needed. For really loud stuff like a router, these work great for sound reduction, but are pretty uncomfortable because they're so tight. I think one reason they work so good is because they are tight. I put them on over the foamies, and they only stay on as long as I'm running something.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    2,269
    I've picked up several ear muffs for shooting along the way and keep them positioned around the shop. Foam plugs + ear muffs is even better.
    Hobbyist

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    In the foothills of the Sandia Mountains
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    16,134
    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Schuch View Post
    I use the same Peltor electronic muffs that I use at the shooting range. I can hear until the router is turned on then the muffs cut out like they are supposed to when a shot is fired.

    Ear plugs can be a little easier if you are also wearing glasses and a dust mask. In that case I prefer the ear plugs like these:

    2022-09-26_223332.jpg

    I always know where they are (around my neck) and I can put them on quickly with one hand. I like them better than individual ear plugs because they are a lot faster and easier to put on and take off.
    I go by the noise reduction numbers. At NRR 31db, the 3M X5A’s have the best NRR I have found in a passive muff. I have a pair of Howard Leight Impact Sport, and Walker’s ECEL 100 digital muffs for shooting. Both are great at the range for hearing range commands and electronically limiting gunshot noise to ~80db, the actual NRR's however are only 23db and 26db respectively. So, as I understand it, a screaming router cut at 100db will be reduced to ~75db +/- with the digital muffs, the X5A’s would reduce it to 69db.
    JMO
    Please help support the Creek.


    Where we have strong emotions, we're liable to fool ourselves.
    - Carl Sagan


  11. #11
    thanks for the numbers. I originally had ones from the airport but they were so uncomfortable that they compressed my head and reshaped it. Had six pair of princess auto ones on sale for 5.00 years ago and they work fine and are very light and comfortable. Zero chance id ever use those airport ones again and id like to buy 10 more pair of these but never seen them since.

    I went from having my hearing tested over 40 years ago seeing a place when I was downtown and stopping. They told me the numbers and I was down. I worked with bands as well so started to wear ear protection. Went back a year or two later and I was better just one area toasted likely from screaming routers. Got so used to wearing them that I will not take any noise without them, even cutting the lawn. I put them on right away or as soon as my wife starts talking.

    They also keep sawdust out. When its colder outside and working they are also of ear muffs. I'm sure id like protectors with music same time im working if i could set it up but I don't have one of those modern portable things the kids have these days to send the signal.
    Last edited by Warren Lake; 09-27-2022 at 3:38 PM.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Michigan, USA
    Posts
    538
    I use a set of muffs from Fnova. Don't know the model #, but they're nothing particularly expensive (< $30). They do a great job at noise reduction, and are pretty comfortable - but if I have them on for more than about 20 minutes, they're too warm. But other than running a bunch of stock through the planer, I don't usually need to have them on much longer than that.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    2,692
    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Ragatz View Post
    I use a set of muffs from Fnova. Don't know the model #, but they're nothing particularly expensive (< $30). They do a great job at noise reduction, and are pretty comfortable - but if I have them on for more than about 20 minutes, they're too warm. But other than running a bunch of stock through the planer, I don't usually need to have them on much longer than that.
    +1 on the fnovas. They seem to be at the high end for noise reduction but at a very reasonable price. I just checked Amazon. Link. They're $14. I have a couple pairs for the shop. I wear mine sometimes for well over an hour at a stretch. I use them when I volunteer at the local furniture bank and that is not air conditioned and they will take on sweat in the ear muff and the interior foam piece.
    Brian

    "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger or more complicated...it takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." - E.F. Schumacher

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    7,973
    Watch the db rating. Db is a logarithmic scale so 7 db difference is about double the noise and double the damage. I like the Peltor logging helmet sold as Sthil or Husqvarna. hard hat, mesh face guard and era muffs in one. Great for power tools that throw stuff like saws and routers as well as mowers and even chainsaws.
    Bill D
    Sthil is 24 Db around $50 USA. I trust those db numbers from Sweden testing I do not trust no name numbers from China
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-6Z1E0mW2ag

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    412
    Blog Entries
    1
    I'm really happy with my 3M worktunes with bluetooth/radio. I like having the radio on and while I should be more concerned with my hearing health - I like that I can listen to my radio while running the loud machines. It's kind of a win win.

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