Tag Archives: earplugs

Alpine MotoSafe earplugs just got better!

A tiny little piece of plastic has just made universal-fit MotoSafe earplugs from Dutch company Alpine Hearing Protection even better.

With the new minigrip they are now just that little bit easier to pull out, extending the life of the earplugs.

We have written on many occasions about the importance of earplugs. Basically they make you more relaxed, less weary, more alert and save your hearing, all at the same time.

We’ve tried many different earplugs, including personalised moulded plugs which are very effective, but can leave you feeling disoriented like you are underwater.

MotoSafe plugs are cheaper, more convenient (no need for a fitting because they fit all ears) and more comfortable, even when riding all day with a tight helmet. Since there is no silicone in the material, they also don’t get sweaty or itchy.

Most importantly, they filter out the damaging wing noise. And that’s why we sell them online.Alpine Motosafe earplugs

MotoSafe safe

Turbulence generated at high speeds can reach 103dB which is why all racers wear foam plugs to block out all sound.

The filter in MotoSafe blocks damaging high-frequency wind noise, but still allows you to hear important sounds such as sirens, horns and screeching tyres.

Meanwhile, it still allows you to hear “pleasant sounds” such as your music, phone conversation, GPS turn prompts and your bike’s exhaust note!

However, we have damaged a couple of sets in the past trying to pull them out.

They come with a small black plastic applicator which you use to push them all the way in until you hear an air seal. (Make sure to wet the plug first!)

To remove them, reverse the applicator and dig underneath the plug to break the seal, then grab the filter and gently pull them out.

The previous plug design had a short filter and you sometimes had to twist them to get them out, breaking the filter in the process!

Alpine MotoSafe earplugs make riders safer
Old MotoSafe earplugs without the mingrip

Now the minigrip prevents that issue and makes them just that little bit better.

They come in black (Tour) which reduces noise by 27dB or red (Race) which provides 30dB of noise filtering. I use the red ones all the time; even when just heading out to the shops.


In Australia, about four million people have hearing loss. In the UK it’s 10 million and in the US, some 48 million have some form of hearing loss.

While hearing loss is a part of the natural ageing process, it is increased by prolonged exposure to excessive noise and riders are more than likely to experience greater hearing losses in their senior years.

I not only have profound hearing loss, but, like about 30% of the population, I also suffer from tinnitus (ringing in the ears).

These conditions have developed from years of motorcycle riding, as well as playing in rock bands, going to concerts and listening to loud music.

The ringing is so bad it sometimes wakes me at night.

It’s not actually motorcycle exhaust or engine noise that cause the biggest problem, but wind noise, according to the American Industrial Paramedic Services.

That’s why riders should have some form of hearing protection whenever they ride, especially on long trips. Any earplug is better than no earplugs.

How long can you ride without risk of hearing damage?

Speed Average volume of wind noise under a helmet              Maximum time without risk of hearing damage
100km/h 94dB 15 minutes
120km/h 98dB 7 minutes
140km/h 102dB 3 minutes
160km/h 106dB 90 seconds

Helmet protection?Loud music wind noise earplugs

If you don’t think you can get hearing loss or tinnitus from riding because you wear a full-face helmet, you’re wrong.

Dutch magazine Promotor tested the noise levels in 10 different “system” (modular or flip-up) helmets at varying speeds and found some startling results.

The best result was 86dB at 50km/h which proses a risk of permanent hearing damage after just two hours of riding.

At 100km/h, the same helmet registered 100dB which is more noise than a hammer drill at 95dB.

At the other end of the spectrum the worst performing helmet registered 92dB at 50km/h which is comparable to a train speeding past.

At 100km/h it registered 106dB, which is louder than the noise of a chain saw or a disco.

While full-face helmets are quieter, they are not substantially quieter, especially if you ride with the visor open on hot summer days.

Technical details

Alpine MotoSafe earplug filters reduce noise at different levels for different frequencies.

For the technically minded, the Tour plugs reduce bass sounds around 63Hz by 6.6dB and 8000Hz treble sounds by 16.12dB which is wind noise at 50km/h.

The maximum amount of protection is in the harsh and harmful midrange of 2000-4000Hz where the noise suppression is 23.8-18.5dB.

The Race plugs drop bass frequencies 15.7dB, midrange by 26.1 and treble by 19.7dB.

Reduction in noise may vary from ear to ear, depending on fit, with a variation of 2.8 to 4.4dB.

This data was tested according to European standard EN 352-2: 2002.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Reader deal: Buy Visorcat, get free earplugs

Clear vision and protecting your ears seem to be important for our readers so we are offering a special reader deal of a free set of MotoSafe Tour earplugs with each Visorcat wiper/washer tour pack bought through our shop.

When we published a review of the Visorcat a few weeks ago, we expected a lot of negative comments. There were a few, but there was also a lot of interest.

We tested the system and found it was a handy device for not only wiping off the rain, but also washing off bugs and grime without scratching the visor. (See our review below.)

So we decided to sell it through our online shop.

We are also big supporters of wearing earplugs to prevent fatiguing tinnitus and permanent hear loss when you ride, so we also sell the MotoSafe Tour or Race earplugs from $29.95.

Special reader deal

Since both the Visorcat and MotoSafe earplugs are distributed by xenonOz, we have offered the two together for the price of the Visorcat tour pack at $115.

The tour pack includes extra washer liquid and sponge refills and comes with a free pair of Tour earplugs as a special reader deal.

Alpine MotoSafe earplugs make riders safer planning wax reader deal
Buy Alpine Tour earplugs for your next adventure

The reader deal ends at the end of May, so be quick and protect your eyes and ears!

Visorcat review

Dirty visors are not only a nuisance but a safety risk, but the glove-mounted Visorcat washer/wiper allows you to clean your visor on the go.

Visorcat is made of rubber with a webbing strap that goes around your hand.

There is a rubber loop to go over your finger or thumb, a reservoir for the provided visor wash and two 75mm-long (3”) windscreen-wiper-style blades that sit on the back of your hand, below the knuckle.

Underneath the blades is a sponge.

You wipe right to left to remove rainwater with the double rubber wiper blades.

Visorcat helmet visor cleaner and wiper reader deal
Wipe right to left to clear your visor with the double rubber blades

If your visor is dirty and needs a wash first, you wipe left to right.

The curved edge of the wiper flap pulls back automatically to reveal the sponge underneath which is moistened by the supplied washing liquid.

Visorcat helmet visor cleaner and wiper reader deal
Wipe left to right to use the sponge

There’s a wick connecting the sponge to the reservoir to keep it moist.

Make sure the sponge is wet to start with and the reservoir is full.Visorcat helmet visor cleaner and wiper reader deal

Due to the favourable response from many readers, we have decided to stock this safety product in our shop.

Click here to buy now. The washer/wiper with a bottle of liquid is $99, the touring pack with extra liquid and sponges is $115 and the refill pack with a bottle of liquid and three sponges is $24.95. Postage is extra.

Visorcat helmet visor cleaner and wiper reader deal

Our view

I was initially quite sceptical of this product. It looked cumbersome and, frankly, a bit ridiculous.

However, it’s easy to fit over your left glove and tighten with the strap to stay in place.

Once in place you can hardly feel it’s there and it doesn’t in any way limit your clutch hand movement.

I also thought it would be a nuisance every time I took my glove off or put it on, but it actually stays in place, so there’s no need to remove it.

If you do want to remove it, just undo the strap and it comes off in a second.

The wiper blades are great for quickly and effectively wiping rainwater off your visor.

On wide visors you may have to wipe up to three times to cover the whole field of vision, but generally one wipe will clear enough of the visor for good vision.

Yet another reason to go riding in the rain!Fogging helmet visor wet rain work visorcat reader deal

Dirty visor

A dirty visor is another matter.

I prefer to wash off grime, insects, dust, etc with water or a cleaning liquid. If you wipe it straight away, you are liable to scratch your visor.

Even if you can’t see the scratches, you may have made very small scratches which cause a blurry “starring” effect when looking into the sun or car lights at night. 

I was reticent to use the sponge washer, so I tried it first on an old helmet.

You have to make sure the sponge is well and truly moist before wiping across your visor.

I preferred to pull over and check that the sponge was wet first. I even added an extra dob of the liquid directly on to the sponge just to make sure.Visorcat helmet visor cleaner and wiper reader deal

I tried it several times on the old helmet and it worked fine without any visible or even minor scratching. That made me confident enough to try it on a brand new visor. It left no scratches.

However, I would not use it on a very dirty or dusty visor. I’d douse the visor with plenty of water first.

The Visorcat works just fine for light grime such as a small bug straight after you’ve hit it.

And isn’t that usually the case? You’ve just cleaned your visor, hopped on your bike and in the first kilometre you hit a bug right in the middle of your field of vision!

With the Visorcat you don’t have to stop; you can keep on riding!

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com