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#1 Gear Nazi
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Read an interesting article the other day about wearing ear plugs while riding. There were the pros and the cons. One of the most interesting pros I read was that it reduces fatigue, because long exposure to loud noises causes mental fatigue. A couple guys around here wear the foam ear plugs, I always have, always will wear mine, because at the track mental fatigue becomes a big issue. You guys think it's unsafe doing it on the streets because of less ability to hear horns, voices, etc? Just wondering.
 

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I wear the spongy foam plugs and I think I actually hear better when I'm at speed because of the reduction in wind noise. It may be misguided perception but it certainly seems that way.

Mike
 

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#1 Gear Nazi
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Yeah I wear the same "foamies" because I work around F-16's we have to wear them at work, so we get them supplied for free. I grab a handful every once in a while, up to about 200 sets in my droor I think, haha. I do agree with you about the windnoise, I find it a big distraction at the track, I don't need to be spending any of my "$10 worth of attention" on wind noise.

I just never did even think about wearing them on the street, and since I don't ride street anymore I figured I would ask those who knew what they thought.
 

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I recently tried using foam earplugs. I work in a factory so I have an unlimited supply of them. I like riding with the ear plugs than without. The wind noise is greatly reduced so my attention is better focused on the ride. I don't know about talking to other riders with them in as I am new and don't ride with anyone at this point in time.
 

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I barely ever ride without them. You can hear all the important sounds just fine. You might have trouble understanding your buddy's voice when he's next to you though. Anyone who thinks it's "unsafe" either hasn't tried it or is one of those "helmets restrict my vision/hearing" types.
 

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Always wear them, impossible to hear people though, have to take them off if I need to talk to anyone. It's cheap, comfortable on long rides and will help you keep your hearing as you get older
 

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Yeah, I completely agree, and it seems to be the consensus in this thread, I figured I would get a couple naysayers though. Oh well, I wear them anyways, and will continue wearing them even if I get another street legal bike one day.
 

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i hear more with the plugs in. now that the wind noise is gone, i can hear the other stuff that was being masked.
 

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I wear mine whenever I am going on more than a 10 or 15 minute ride. Should I wear them all the time? you betcha. but.. I guess I am just a tiny bit lazy :)

I always feel much better after a long ride when wearing ear plugs, and they don't seem to impair hearing at all.. just dull the roar.
 

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I always wear ear-plugs. Everyone should. Cuts down on the wind noise and lets you hear importans sounds, such as sirens, horns, etc. I consider my plugs as important as my helmet when I ride. If you don't wear them, you are being ignorant at the cost of your hearing.
 

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I wear them as well, I spend 4 hours at a time going to school or back, and I take the trip quite often.

I love them a lot, but after 4 hours my ears hurt not from noise, but from the pressure of the ear plugs. Time to try out some different ear plugs...
 

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Stang Man said:
I wear them as well, I spend 4 hours at a time going to school or back, and I take the trip quite often.

I love them a lot, but after 4 hours my ears hurt not from noise, but from the pressure of the ear plugs. Time to try out some different ear plugs...
Go to a hearing doctor, get some custom fit to your ear, they are washable and reusable, and VERY comfortable. I got mine for free through the military, but lost them a while back. I could go back in to get more, just haven't felt the motiviation. I'm so used to wearing foamies for 3-4 hours a day, it doesn't hurt anymore.
 

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yep, foamies are great when you're cruising on the highway. I don't really where them when I'm riding a short distance, but I probably should.
 

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i only wear them when i know im gonna be on the freeway. cuz my daily commute is so short, i dont get up to speed to really have an effect
 

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I had a pair of custom ear plugs made about a year ago for $40. The foam ones never did much for me and I found out why. I could never get the foam plugs in my really narrow ear canal far enough to do any good. The molded ones fit perfectly (obviously), are still a little hard to get in some times, feel great to wear all day, and really knock down the wind noise. If I forget to put them in, I stop and do it because it just isn't good without them now.

I was following a forest service fire truck (red lights blinking) yesterday on a winding road who seemed to be on a training drive. He fired up the siren a couple of times and I could hear it just fine. With the pugs in I can actually tell whether or not my helmet vents are open by the slight change in low wind noise.
 

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If you are worried about hearing important sounds on the road, look around for different ear plugs. There are different brands and stuff that are supposed to reduce noise by different levels, anywhere from 19 to 30 db.
 

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firefighter81 said:
You guys think it's unsafe doing it on the streets because of less ability to hear horns, voices, etc? Just wondering.
Pobably the best way to drown out important audio cues (such as sirens, horns, screeching tires, etc.) would be to ride in a quiet automobile interior with the air conditioner running and the stereo blaring.

I can't see any reason NOT to wear ear plugs on a motorcycle, and I can't believe it took some states so long to specifically legalize their use - especially California with it's large number of riders.

I personally prefer the reusable rubber ear plugs available in the shooting section in sporting goods stores. Just as comfortable as the foamies (IMHO), and you can clean them and re-use them as long as you can keep track of them!
 

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hearing

You guys make me feel guilty, i ride with headphones or ear bud phones almost 100% of the time. I lile to listen to music when i ride it just makes the entire experience more enjoyable for me. Don't get me wrong I don't crank them to the point of drowning out all sound, just high enough to enjoy and still hear most of the sounds around me.
 
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