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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Ballooning 101 » » Hearing damage? (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

R2D2
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I was doing some twisting last weekend for some kids when I suddenly popped a 260. It was inflated almost all the way (which I think made it louder) and had already been tied off.

The kids screamed and I could hardly hear anything for a few seconds. Then I heard some ringing, and then it went away and everything got back to normal.

Am we risking hearing loss by doing balloon twisting? What kind of precautions should I be taking? (Btw, I use a hand pump instead of mouth inflating.)
NYCTwister
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The loud noise is essentially a sonic boom.

You should never twist a balloon that is too "tight", or give it to a child.

I've seen twisters make, say a wiener dog and, having inflated it too much, end up with a tail that is that is too "tight" and give it to a kid.

This is very irresponsible. That section of the balloon can easily break and can cause injury, especially to the eyes.

The child probably reacted as they did due to the fact that their hearing is more sensitive than an adults.
That's why I don't make hats for children under five.

If you miscalculate the inflation just make another.
Balloons are cheap enough, and to try to save a minute, or a balloon, doesn't make sense.
If you need fear to enforce your beliefs, then your beliefs are worthless.
R2D2
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Actually, the kids were a good distance away from me. I think they were just startled.

Thanks for the good advice. In this case, I was making a bunny rabbit and the ears consist of a pink 260 tied in a loop and then twisted in half. So to do this, I usually inflate the balloon most of the way. Is that a bad idea? Maybe I should leave 1-2 inches tail.

I've seen other designs that use nearly fully inflated balloons and it does scare me a bit.

Thanks again for the reply. This balloon forum (well, its members) is really great.
Karen Climer
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I could have a balloon with 1-2 inches tail that might be very different than your balloon with 1-2 inches tail. I pretty much burp everything. That means I can inflate it a little more, but it will still be soft enough to twist. You really just have to practice (there isn't a short cut).

For example, for a six-petal flower, I inflate all the way, then burp A LOT. That way, it is soft throughout the balloon. Other people would blow it up and leave a 6-inch tail. Either way works, but if the 6-inch tail person saw me do a flower, he would think I was crazy for inflating too much. Does that make sense?

For the rabbit ears, I would inflate it all the way, then deflate just enough to tie the ends together. It should be soft enough for the one twist.
Christopher Lyle
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Quote:
On Jan 20, 2016, R2D2 wrote:

Am we risking hearing loss by doing balloon twisting?


Balloons pop. Part of the gig!
In Mystery,


Christopher Lyle
Magician, Comic, Daredevil, and Balloon Twisting Genius
For a Good Time...CLICK HERE!
R2D2
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Karen, I completely understand. Thanks for the reply.

Christopher, I had no idea that balloons popped until last week. Why didn't anyone tell me? Smile
Stapper
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You should be happy! Not telling you, prevents to not starting!
And now you started, you are lost ;-)
Arty Twist
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R2D2, issues with occupational hearing loss only apply when the sound is either prolonged or extremely load so no one is really at risk of hearing loss from popping balloons. However, a popped balloon is not always the kind of attention you would like to draw to yourself. You can only make a joke of it a couple of times before it's no longer funny. So be careful to never over inflate. Also, some locations are louder than others, this will not just make the sound of a popping balloon louder, but will make the sound of a group of kids louder and can add to the chaos. You can test the reflective qualities of a space by clapping your hands. I know this all sounds a little dry and technical, but for me it is an important part of preparing for the best experience for all. And you can make a game of it. RT
R2D2
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Thanks, Arty. Good advice.

I've gotten better about burping my balloons appropriately.

You're right that the sound wasn't prolonged, but I get concerned when my ears actually start ringing. That's what made me wonder if that sound counted as "extremely loud".
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