Motorcycle Blog

I have long been aware that wind noise contributes massively to the fatiguing effects of riding a motorcycle; pretty understandable given that at motorway speeds the volume inside a helmet is apparently the equivalent to having a pneumatic drill pounding away at you.

So I had been toying with the idea of getting some personal ear plugs rather than continually nicking from the office stash of disposable freebies we give out at shows 😉 . At the Aberdare Road Races I decided to utilise the time spent waiting for it to stop raining by finally acting on this idea, and I had casts taken of my ears to have plugs made which fit me and me only.

The sensation was simply the strangest thing I have experienced in a long time; it is neither natural nor pleasant to have goo injected that far down your lug-holes.

The jury is still out on whether it was worth it. I did get a pretty good deal cash-wise, and I did get to choose bright blue to match my bike and satisfy the girliness in me. However, I’m just not sure 😕 .

They are quite solid, which surprised me – I think I expected softer, more malleable rubber. This means my ears now get bashed by my helmet each time I pull it on or off. It also means after a long journey my ears can feel quite tired – really not something I would call ‘normal’.

I have also found them quite a hassle to insert, although I am hoping this is just a matter of technique improving over time. It is definately a two-handed affair, and it is all too easy to get the angle off just slightly, and you will be fumbling for ages, cursing (a lot) and getting less and less likely to fit them with each mini-tantrum. On the other hand, sometimes I manage it within seconds, and wonder what the fuss on the previous ride had been about. Which just confuses me further.

I think the conclusion I am almost at is that when i’m out for a decent spin on my bike then yep, genius, cuts out almost every last bit of wind noise (I chose the filter level for race & motorway use rather than normal road use), and I can hear my bike’s engine crisper than ever, which is great. Definately worth the hassle.

However, when out as a pillion? Or on just a short run-around? No thanks, I think i’d rather just have a little noise and get to where I am going without the extra palarva.

As of 19 June 2014, Rhiannon is no longer a partner of the firm.

8 Comments
  • Suzi

    August 21, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    I was interested to hear your comments on these ear-plugs as I’ve been almost deafened by wind noise since changing my helmet (strange as it is the same make as previously). I hate things in my ears and didn’t fancy paying lots of money for things I might not use. I think I may have feelings very similar to yours. Meanwhile I am trying to get used to something alien in my ears with the freebies you gave me at GEMS (thank you!).

  • Les Day

    August 21, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Interesting as I was considering having some of these made but hadn’t thought they may be so hard/uncomfortable.

  • Brian

    August 29, 2009 at 9:45 am

    Hi `ear plug girl’ I am very satisfied with E.A.R. Classics I buy 250 pairs @ £25.00 odd once a year I use a new pair every day. They are the NUTS I hear only my exhaust burble and am able to communicate on my mobile visa sat nav clearly up to 70 mph after that its a bit too noisy anyway.

    I would say my concentration levels are increased by at least 90% when wearing these Girls in short skirts take up the other 10% lol

    Brian 🙂

  • Rhi

    August 30, 2009 at 9:04 am

    The ones I have are made of medical grade silicon; having a quick search on the web that does appear to be the industry norm for motorcycle ear plugs, but there may be companies out there using a softer material? Having paid out for one pair already though, I am unlikely to do the same again. I have persevered with these, and am finding them easier to put in as time goes on, but it is still a pain trying to put my helmet on without rubbing my ears or moving the plug.

  • Andrew

    September 2, 2009 at 8:32 pm

    I got a pair too. I slept in them for a few nights (at a motorcycle show) and my ears toughened up nicely. EAR plugs are pretty damn good too, and cheap.

  • Ken Lines

    October 23, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    I had my plugs made, at the Lincoln BIG Bike Fest, by a company called PLUGZZ, having heard comments previously about the plugs being ‘rather hard’ I asked if they could manufacture my set in a soft rubber. There was no problem with this and I was supplied with a nice soft pair of, very effective, ear plugs. They do, in my opinion, take a bit of getting used to, initially I found the link cord was quite painful under my Arai – removing it made all the difference. I now carry a small plastic container to hold the plugs when not in use. I can fit them quite quickly now, probably in about the same time as it takes to insert the soft foam type. It is important to remember to wash the plugs after each usage and dry them carefully.

    Ken Lines.

  • Yana

    March 25, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    Rhi
    Obviously you have not mentioned which company you had your ear plugs done with but I would say that i think this might be the problem. Different companies have different ways of doing things. Just like different bikes fit better for different riders lol!
    I have had custom made ear plugs for six years now and i shopped around and got reviews of different companies before i went with the one that i eventually chose. I chose them exactly because they had a variety of plugs to choose from depending on how much flexibility you wanted and whether it was motorbike use or even just to sleep in, incase you had a partner that snored their head off. This company has been excellent at repairing my ear plugs after i stepped on them in my motorbike boots!! I too chose mine in blue so they matched my bike and i am now on my second pair as they improved the size of the earplugs and the strength of the wires (headphone leads) over the years, i think nothing of slipping them in -one handed – and away i go/ No headaches, no earbendings in the helmet, no hard bits in the ears to get used to. Yep a tad expensive, if like me you want to have headphone leads in them but, well worth it. I can let you have the name of the company if you want to try them out – They are well worth it. 🙂 I have recommended them to several people and they are all happy with them,,

    1. Andrew

      March 29, 2011 at 1:53 pm

      Hey Yana – I have two custom made earplugs, one wired for music and one just plain (which are fantastic for surfing in) and by the end of a long ride they are getting a bit intrusive but I would not be without them.

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