Pipes too loud?

Discussion in 'General OFF TOPIC' started by Gopher Rancher, May 6, 2011.

  1. Gopher Rancher

    Gopher Rancher Member

    I saw something yesterday that struck me as kind of weird. A guy on a Fat Boy with really loud pipes pulled into the parking lot of the grocery store. He shut his bike down, removed his helmet and then pulled a set of ear plugs out of his ears. I was more than 50 feet away from him and was wishing that I had ear plugs too.

    I can appreciate mufflers that are loud enough to let people in cages know where you are, but this was definitely excessive. Why would anyone want pipes so loud that they make it necessary for hearing protection while riding?
  2. TripleJ

    TripleJ Senior Member

    +1 on what smitty said. I wear ear plugs but only because of the wind noise.
  3. Gopher Rancher

    Gopher Rancher Member

    I never thought of it being because of wind noise, but it makes sense. I always ride with a windshield so wind noise hasn't been a problem for me. (I also am allergic to bee stings which is the main reason for the windshield).
  4. docster

    docster Member

    I use them for both reasons.
    1. Wind noise
    2. My wife's pipes, especially if I am on the right side of her Heritage.
  5. oldhippie

    oldhippie Senior Member

    I guess it may depend on whether he was just driving around town or was just coming in off the highway or he has a problem with his ears (infection, etc).
    If his pipes were that loud that you were wishing you had earplugs in, there's a good chance he wears them because the decibal level bothers him too. Just too caught up in the "loud pipes save lives" train of thought. Loud pipes may save lives BUT obnoxiously loud pipes just confuse drivers more. With the sound bouncing off everything, it can make it more difficult to determine the direction the sound is from.

    I'll wear earplugs on windy days because of the wind noise but otherwise, with my Supertrapp SE's, my wife and I don't need them.
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
  6. blademan

    blademan Active Member

    Maybe laws like this is why they pulled it. V C Section 27400 Wearing of Headsets or Earplugs
  7. Bodeen

    Bodeen Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    Ear plugs are a must for any distance for me.

  8. cedarbrook63

    cedarbrook63 Junior Member

    Always wear ear plugs - I wear an open face Harley lid on my HD (although I always said I would stick to a full face - I haven't) which is noisy traveling at 60+mph and I have a full face carbon fibre lid on my Suzuki which I ride at 80-90mph. The wind noise at the higher speeds is quite bad. I've never ridden a bike without a helmet as they're compulsory here but it must be very noisy for your poor ear equipment. Recently bought some fancy rubber ear plugs with interchangeable plastic rod inserts which are vastly superior to the compressable foam plugs I used to use.

    btw - I don't like obnoxiously loud pipes. My SEIIs are about 10dB over the "legal" limit here in UK but they sound lovely and are not rudely loud. They have also saved my bacon by getting me noticed a few times.
  9. R_W_B

    R_W_B Senior Member

    Wow glad to hear other people do the same thing as me (for the same reason) . I don't think it's the pipes since I have loud V&Hs but as long as I didn't get over 50mph my ears were always fine when I got home. I would be riding at the same rpm in 5th gear.

    But when I go over 50mph and get up over 60mph (same rpm in 6 gear) for any amount of time the wind really gets to my ears. When I got home (before I started with ear plugs) I could hardly hear the TV. Admittedly my ears are slowly going deaf from yrs of construction noise and working with dynamite and C-4 in the Army. But none the less since I wear ear plugs I can hear much better after riding at speeds and the ringing in my ears is not as bad.

    I can put them in a certain way where it still blocks the sound without making me feel like I'm under water.
  10. glgarrett

    glgarrett Active Member

    I've seen several people do that and wondered about it... Wind noise... OK, then...:s