September 30th, 2017

Suppressors — Why You Still Need Hearing Protection

suppressor silencer moderator facts fiction sound levels noise decibles dB
Silencer-equipped AR photo courtesy The Silencer Shop.

OK, you’ve paid the tax stamp and acquired your new suppressor (aka “silencer” or “moderator”). Do you still need to wear earplugs or muffs? Absolutely. Even with that expensive new “can”, your rifle could be generating over 140 decibels (dB) of noise — about the same as as an unmuffled 9mm pistol shot. That’s loud enough to create permanent hearing loss with repeated exposure.

Firearms Are Loud: 140 dB to 175 dB

Audiology group ASHA explains: “Exposure to noise greater than 140 dB can permanently damage hearing. Almost all firearms create noise that is over the 140-dB level. A small .22-caliber rifle can produce noise around 140 dB, while big-bore rifles and pistols can produce sound over 175 dB. Firing guns in a place where sounds can reverberate, or bounce off walls and other structures, can make noises louder and increase the risk of hearing loss. Also, adding muzzle brakes or other modifications can make the firearm louder. People who do not wear hearing protection while shooting can suffer a severe hearing loss with as little as one shot[.] Audiologists see this often, especially during hunting season when hunters and bystanders may be exposed to rapid fire from big-bore rifles, shotguns, or pistols.” Source: ASHA, Recreational Firearm Noise Exposure.

suppressor silencer moderator facts fiction sound levels noise decibles dB

Suppressors, On Average, Reduce Noise Levels about 30 Decibels
In an article for Ammoland, gunwriter Sam Hoober says that you can expect about 30 decibels (dB) of noise reduction from the average suppressor: “Looking at a few different products, SilencerCo attests their suppressors reduce the sound pressure of a 9mm gunshot to anywhere from 125.7 dB to 131.5 dB, depending on the model. Advanced Armament Co, another popular supplier, attests a 23 dB to 33 dB reduction or down to 127 dB. Liberty Suppressors, another manufacturer, attests a reduction of 24 dB to 38 dB, depending on model and other factors. In short, we can presume something on the order of 30 dB of attenuation as an average.”

Using that 30 dB number you can quickly discern that you’ll still need hearing protection — good hearing protection — when shooting any suppressed firearm (even a .22 LR). “Spikes of 130 dB and more can result in permanent hearing damage instantly”. Source: NRA Blog.

The Myth of the “Quiet” .22 LR
The NRA Blog notes that “many rimfire shooters, particularly those using the beloved .22 Long Rifle cartridge, argue that the small .22 LR caliber doesn’t produce enough sound to damage your hearing”. So, is that really true. or is it a myth?

In fact, a .22 LR can be much louder than you think — a .22 LR pistol can produce sound levels of 134 dB. That’s well above the normal human pain threshhold.

Sound Levels for Common Noises:

9mm Luger pistol: 160 dB

Jet aircraft engine (near): 140 dB

.22 LR pistol: 134 dB

Normal human pain threshold: 120 dB

Noisy Nightclub: 110 db

Riding Motorcycle at 65 mph: 103 db

Power Lawnmower: 95 dB

Hearing damage possible: 85 dB (sustained for 8+ hours)

Ringing Telephone: 80 dB

Normal conversation: 60 dB


The Risk of Hearing Loss
Hearing loss can be progressive and irreversible. If you are a shooter, this is serious business. As the NRA Blog cautions: “You may not even realize you’re harming your hearing. Hearing loss occurs gradually, and can go effectively unnoticed until symptoms become severe. By then, the damage is done.”

Nobody wants to go deaf. But we often see shooters without effective hearing protection when they are walking around a few yards behind the firing line. That’s bad — even if you are away from the firing line, gunshot noises can damage your hearing. You MUST use effective hearing protection every time you go to the range. Good foam earplugs costs mere pennies but they can prevent deafness in your later years. Many folks also wear muffs over plugs.

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September 30th, 2017

World’s Largest Gun Show in Tulsa, Oklahoma November 11-12

tulsa Wannemacher's Gun Show Worlds Largest NRA Gun Collectors

The “World’s Largest Gun Show” runs November 11-12, 2017, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Wanenmacher’s Tulsa Arms Show will feature “Five Miles of Ailes” and over 4200 tables of guns, accessories, knives, and gun-related collectibles. All that hardware will be displayed in one, giant 11-acre building.

tulsa Wannemacher's Gun Show Worlds Largest NRA Gun Collectors

Hosted in the the heart of the country, the Wanemacher Gun Show attracts visitors from around the world. One attendee said: “If you can’t find it here, you can’t find it anywhere… it’s got something for everyone.” The organizers say this show offers the “largest selection of antique, collector and modern firearms, knives, and accessories” on the planet.

11 ACRES of Guns at the Tulsa Arms Show

NRA National Gun Collectors Convocation at Tulsa Gun Show
A highlight of the Tulsa Arms Show will be the 22nd Annual NRA National Gun Collectors Show. Established in 1995 through the efforts of the NRA Board of Directors Gun Collectors Committee, the show is dedicated to showcasing and recognizing the finest individual collector displays. These non-commercial exhibits feature a wide variety of quality, collector firearms and other artifacts, many of historical, cultural, and/or technological significance.

tulsa Wannemacher's Gun Show Worlds Largest NRA Gun Collectors
Photo courtesy Ruger Owner Collectors Society.

Exhibitors can compete for $10,000+ in cash and prizes in more than a dozen categories. Registration is now open for collectors interested in exhibiting at the 22nd Annual NRA National Gun Collectors Show. To reserve a table or learn more about the Collectors Event, visit www.tulsaarmsshow.com, email mail@tulsaarmsshow.com, or call (918) 492-0401.

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