Sunday, November 20, 2011

Y'know, that's not a half-bad idea...

Heroditus Huxley on her recent range outing:
Jeesh. Between nice, clueless guys that want a rifle just like what they shoot in Call of Duty (and don't know the first thing about even what caliber it shoots, much less how hard it's going to kick), and the dumbass white trash* shooting nickle-plated Beretta-style .40 caliber handguns without hearing protection for them OR FOR THEIR 8 MONTH OLD DAUGHTER!! OR WIFE!! I was about ready to call Odysseus and ask him to pick up a couple packages of the cheap, orange foam earplugs sold at pretty much every Wal-Mart, and start handing them out so I could shoot without worrying about damaging someone else's hearing.
The more I think about it, the more sense it seems to me to keep a wad of disposable foam earplugs and a couple pairs of cheap-o disposable hardware store safety goggles in my range bag next to the Israeli Wound Bandages and other first aid gear so that I can hand them out to Cletus and Imogene when they show up at the range without.

It seems a charitable thing to do, and I do feel bad when I see someone arrive sans appropriate safety accoutrements, even if it's through their own igner'nce, so I would get something out of it for myself, if only a rewarded sense of noblesse oblige.


Anonymous said...

Foam plugs are great IF used properly. You shouldn't just cram them in. Here's the right way:

A 200-pair box is $25 or so from an industrial supplier.

Anonymous said...

About a year ago I stepped out of my clinic and saw the local lawn care company beautifing the area. One of the goofs was running a backpack airblower at full throatle. I could hardly get his attention it was so loud. Also, he couldn't hear me; he wasn't wearing any earprotection. I promptly went to my truck; retreived the extra pair of ear muffs from my range bag and strongly urged him to wear the suckers!
I spent over 35 years on a farm with loud tractors, mowing equipment and other assorted instruments of farming. I will never go without hearing protection!


Balloon Goes Up said...

I bought a 250ct box of those ear plugs at Fastenal and I keep a handful in each of my range bags, a few in my jeep, and a few in my "daddy bag."

I use them myself if I am shooting a rifle and my normal ears are getting in the way, I use them when I am shooting a video so I look a little "cooler"

But mainly I give them out freely to anyone that needs them.

If the person is shooting with me, I also offer them either the extra set normal ears I keep in the jeep or the extra set I keep in my bag, or if they are little one of the 2 children pairs I bring when I am shooting for my kids (or that I bring to fireworks).

Now that I type it out, it seems like I have a ton of hearing protection lying around.

westofthewest said...

Our range doesn't let you on the firing line without eye and ear protection. They will rent Cletus and Imogene some glasses and muffs for a nominal fee.

blog said...

I hand out quite a number of sets of child and adult sized foam plugs every year at Boomershoot. It annoys me when people bring babies sans earpro to spectate.

greg said...

At my range the RO won't let you shoot without some kind of ear protection...they are are a little slacker on eye protection(for instance, I can get away with wearing normal glasses and a ball-cap.)

I can't see shooting without ear protection. One slow afternoon at hunting camp(before the beer started flowing) we decided to shoot some soda cans. After a while with .22's, I broke out my S&W 686, and fired off a few .357 Golden Saber's...even in the great wide open it was painfully loud.

Anonymous said...

Tamponade are nice to have on tap as well as the Israeli - "somewhat profusely bleeding hole(s)" are their metier.

Odysseus said...

The range HH and I go to is unsupervised someone from the conservation department opens the gate around sunup and closes it about sundown.

This means it varies from just as scary as that sounds(Cletus magnet) to a few really cool old retired re-loaders who shoot everything they loaded that evening then pick up all the re-loadable brass that people leave around.

Sure the posted rules say you have to use protection but they get followed about as much as other kinds of protection these people should be using. This is to say nothing of Cletus bump firing his SKS at the 50 yard range or running down-range to check his target without mentioning it to anyone else on the firing line.

All told it's an interesting exercise in situational awareness while shooting.

Anonymous said...

The rubber earplugs shaped like a Christmas tree are reusable if washed a bit. They don't attenuate quite as well as the good foam style, but they are far superior to not using anything.

I have 3 or 4 sets with my infrequent range partners' names written in sharpie on the case stashed in my bag, along with another 6 or so unsoiled sets for Mr. & Mrs. Great Unwashed and Junior.

I, too, feel slightly guilty for some reason when shooting/mowing/whatever next to someone who doesn't have hearing protection.

Ethically, I shouldn't - it's their problem. But I do, so I keep spares.

And I found out yesterday that the best way to inspire an epiphany in Mr. Call O' Duty is to hand him a Nagant M38 shorty and one of those sharp-ass stripper clips.

After I told him the Nagant was in CoD, he just HAD to have a go.

One cut thumb, one bruised shoulder, and some coaching on trigger control & breathing resulted in a serious eye-opener.

"Uh, this is much harder than it looks. I usually just press "B" to reload."

MSgt B said...

I always keep a handful of foamies in the range bag. Sometimes I forget my hard shells.
Last time at the range, a nice young Navy fella and his girlfriend showed up to shoot, but the RO wouldn't let them go without hearing protection. I got to do my good deed for the day and hand them some foamies from the bag. (This is me with a warm fuzzy feeling)

Fred said...

I've been doing that for a while now. I ask for the eyes back when they're done though.

Anonymous said...

The range I shoot at most has a few cheap headsets in the sign-in/target shack.
I often haul an extra set, or two, with me when I go too in case.

Also were a headset, or plugs, when operating the snowblower or lawn mower.

My grandma was deaf and I hope to avoid that inconvenience.

BGMiller said...

I've always got a few of the the little individual blister packs of the rubber plugs with the neck cord in my bag and a couple of pairs of cheap safety glasses.

The occasional trip into the plant past the PPE station is a good thing. And the occupational health folks are over joyed if somebody sticks their head in and asks about any sort of safety gear.


Mike said...

For a couple years now, I've been keeping a cheap pair of safety glasses (I actually got them free at work) and my old ear muffs in my range bag. There have been a couple times when I've loaned out the glasses, and once I caught a family that brought their 10ish year old son along with no hearing or eye protection for him, so I loaned them mine.

Being Texans, they had the good grace to be embarrassed that they needed to borrow something from a stranger.

DJ said...

Try these:

In a box of 12 (bulk sales only), they cost $2.67 each (more or less) including shipping.

I've used them for years as shooting glasses, safety glasses, and as ordinary sunglasses. They're strong, scratch resistant, comfortable, and they fit me.

If you're gonna keep a handful on hand, or give them away now and then, these are hard to beat.

Cond0010 said...

" Between nice, clueless guys that want a rifle just like what they shoot in Call of Duty (and don't know the first thing about even what caliber it shoots, much less how hard it's going to kick), ..."

Whats a caliber? Just kidding.

Anonymous said...

I hand out foam plugs at the Albuquerque City Range all the time - just hate to see a bystander sitting there becoming deafened. CDNN always includes a mess of the foam plugs for free with orders . . . I'm just passing them down the line to folks who need them.

erich martell

Bubblehead Les. said...

I'm beginning to wonder if I need to buy a Bigger Range Bag. Some of those Cletii make me think I need to pack a Vest and a K-Pot for my own safety.

Kristopher said...

That's what I'm doing wrong.

I don't press "B" to reload.

Carry a bag of foams in your glovebox, for yourself, if no one else.

Begging for plugs because you forgot your muffs is embarrassing.

Tam said...

I already keep two sets of muffs, one passive and one active, in my range bag.

og said...

Because I'm always in places that require eyes and ears, I almost always have handsful of eyes and ears in my car. I can't tell you the times I've wandered out of a customer wearing their safety glasses, and they most often don't care if they get them back.
And there's a box of the pink plugs in the range bag. i USED to be able to get the cheap passive muffs for $2 a pair, but those days are over- I bet I had twenty pair.

treefroggy said...

I was told the foam plugs went in your nose to help in breathing control. That explains much.

Jeff the Baptist said...

My local municipal used to have a bucket full of cheap foamies at the front gate. Probably caught 25 cents off their profit for the people who forgot plugs and grabbed a pair.

Rob Reed said...

As an instructor I'm pretty much obligated to have extra muff, plugs, and safety glasses for my students who don't have their own gear.

But, I'm still amazed how many times I wind up loaning them out (or giving them away for the plugs) to just random strangers at the range. This rarely happens at the private range where I am a member (although people do sometimes forget theirs) but is quite common when I shoot at the local gravel pit.

Boat Guy said...

I'm good with handing freebies out to kids who might be underprovided-for, but if the "adults" don't ahve the sense to protect ears and especially eyes, then I'm not gonna interfere with "natural selection". Too much of that goin on already...

Joanna said...

If I shot according to the games I play, I'd spend all my time at the range waiting for a long piece so I can clear the screen.

Sigivald said...

... Imogene?

Is that a stereotypical equivalent to Cletus, now?


Ross said...

Most clubs here in Marxachusetts have range rules that require eyes and ears, and yes, sometimes I see folks without them at the range. I keep several pairs of Howard Leight Max in my range bag just to give away.

This weekend when I showed up at a local range to set up for a turkey shoot I was running, some of the club members were there getting an early start. While chatting with two of them in the parking lot, one got a panicked look on his face as he realized he'd forgotten his muffs. He was so grateful for a pair of plugs he tried to pay me. I refused; if I can save someone from the hearing damage I've sustained over the years of riding bikes WITHOUT hearing protection, it's worth it.

Yeah, I'm a bit of a range nazi about eye and ear protection... and I don't care if it bothers you, pal, as long as you don't get to experience the joy of constantly asking your spouse what someone said, or the pleasant experience of wearing an eyepatch for a week and wondering if your new nickname is going to be Odin. I'll live with your disdain.

Ausprepper said...

Hay, Laydee.
These heere chewin' taffees taste jus' like mah ear leavins'!