Sunday, 22 November 2015

comfort and the little things

I use a bluetooth headset when driving (or even just so I can hands free round the house). Frankly I'm stunned at the amount of total wankers out there driving while holding their phone. Some try all manner of "cunning methods" to (attempt to) hide this fact (that they are juggling a phone, a steering wheel and perhaps gears). Then they whinge like stuck piglets when they are caught and fined. Probably they don't give a shit till they kill someone.

The problem I have with the Bluetooth headsets is that often they don't fit comfortably or even at all. I've had the most success with the smallest "in ear" type but frequently the silicon "comfort pads" are simply uncomfortable. Today I'd like to present my solution to this problem, which (in my usual manner) is both DIY and cheap.

Essentially this is an ordinary foam earplug used for noise reduction (cost about 5c unless you buy them individually where its probably about a buck), which I have adapted to fit onto the spigot of the ear piece.

When fitted into my ear its not only more comfortable than the original silicon, but it holds better in place and  blocks some ambient sound, making it a peach to hear the other person above the car noise (I don't drive a luxury modern car I have an old 4WD).

To get the foam over the sound spigot part of the earpiece, I "drill" a hole in the center as well as shorten it down.

To "drill" the hole I heated up a rather fat nail (while holding it with pliers) and then just pushed it gently through the foam earpiece (with the foam melting as it passes through), cutting a channel for sound and fitment onto the device. The proverbial "hot knife through butter".

You can see the heat stains left on the nail from the last time I heated it up.

To make the entire process easier (as the little foam earplugs are soft by nature), I whack the earplug in the freezer for half an hour before hand. That stiffens it up and makes it easier to hold (without compressing it) and easy to get a nice clean hole through the center.

I also cut it with a sharp knife (a box cutter actually) to be shorter first, then drill it second.

I use a small butane flame (like people use to make brulet or soldering) to heat the nail, and of course hold the head in the pliers (so's I don't burn my fingers).


.. you now have a simple, replaceable, comfortable head set which stays in place well and blocks out car noise from that ear making hearing easier :-)

Go Wild