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Please School Me in Shades

Discussion in 'Tech Tips and Gear' started by townsend, Aug 10, 2017.

  1. townsend

    townsend

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    I'm serious about this. Let me explain why.

    This summer, after approximately a five year wait/delay, I had cataract surgery on my eyes. Due to excessive ultraviolet radiation exposure throughout my life, I eventually developed cataracts. These are known as "foggy lens," but from the inside, all you see is that your vision no longer has visual acuity (= sharpness). And halos around lights at night. Eventually, even prescription glasses would not correct my visual distortion, so that even with glasses, I ended up with 20/30 to 20/40. And astigmatism to boot. And some presbyopia.

    Also, my cataracts were so old that they were slightly tinged "amber." It's unbelievable, but in my post-cataract state, I think that 20% more light is now available, and lights that had a slight amber cast are now white. But I digress.

    I need a great pair of shades/sunglasses for hiking, canyoneering, rock climbing, to protect my eyes. I haven't bought sunglasses in over twenty years (and when I was younger, I never wore them, which is why I got cataracts).

    I know I want some rugged "performance" sunglasses, and though they are expensive, I prefer real glass lens (rather than sophisticated plastic polymers). Colorwise, I prefer green to gray lens.

    I've started to look around some -- some brands are Maui Jim, Oakley, Ryder, etc. If you have some that you can recommend, please recommend. Thank you.

    Scott
  2. Kuenn

    Kuenn

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    @townsend Glad to hear you're seeing better. Cataract surgery? You're still a young man! I thought that was for when you're old...gotta protect those baby blues.

    As far as recommendations, I go for cheap, so long as they're polarized. I'd hate to put a big ol' sandstone scratch on a nice pair of Oakleys, on the first trip....anywhere.

    Take it from your fellow statesmen...
  3. miller.alice.d

    miller.alice.d

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    Just a note -- you may prefer expensive frames for benefits like fit and durability, but they're not any better at blocking UV. Here's one source. Here's another.

    -Any- physical barrier will completely stop UV B rays, and even cheapo glasses do just fine at blocking the (much less harmful) UV A rays.

    One thing I can guarantee for -sure- is that you will lose them over and over again. I've already lost/destroyed 5 pairs this summer (including the pair in my profile pic, lol). For me, that's a loss of less than $50. Glad it wasn't several hundred.
    townsend likes this.
  4. miller.alice.d

    miller.alice.d

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    Amazing! What a great result, congrats!
    townsend likes this.
  5. 2065toyota

    2065toyota

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    I can tell someone where a $150 pair of Spy sunglasses are sitting at our Neon campsite that I set out for the hike out in place where I would never forget to grab them. :(
    Kuenn and miller.alice.d like this.
  6. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    Brian in SLC likes this.
  7. John Styrnol

    John Styrnol

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    Rudy Project are very nice. You can swap out lens for different conditions, just about every part of the frame is removable. The frames are very durable as well. You can even swap out RX lenses. Not cheap though.
  8. Austin Baird

    Austin Baird

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  9. joeb

    joeb middle aged guy who lies around alot

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    For surfing and wet canyons - I have used bomber sunglasses with croakies straps. The bombers are designed to float and the croakies will generally keep them on your head.

    Remember Murphy's rule of sunglasses - the more you spend, the faster they get lost or break
  10. GLD

    GLD

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    Personally I like the Julbo photochromatic glasses (kind of like transition lenses). That way they work most of the time unless it is very dark. The one downside is in cars it doesn't tint all the way while driving but I barely notice.

    The other thing I can say for them is awesome customer service. I have broken them twice.
    The first time they were in a jacket that I aggressively stuffed into my ski bag. I sent them in to the repair address and also requested to buy new lenses for them. They sent them back completely fixed with new lenses for free. I asked if I could pay and they declined.

    I forgot how I broke them the second time (though it was also pretty rough unlike a pair of natives that once broke in a stiff wind). I again offered to pay for my mistake and they fixed the sunglasses again.

    So I like the glasses and their customer service is amazing (unlike my experience iwth la sportiva that makes good products but generally their customer service mode is to ignore you or say SOL-I've tried 3x to deal with la sportiva customer service over the years. Too bad they make great shoes and boots).
  11. hobo_climber

    hobo_climber

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    The Old Me would also recommend to go cheap as The Old Me would loose/break and scratch sunnies like no tomorrow.

    Then I finally invested in a really nice ($$$) pair of oakleys and 4 years later they are still going strong. Polarized is key, I also have a thin bit of soft rubber tubing that "just" fits onto the arms and keeps them nice and snug on me melon while running/biking etc. Don't wear them canyoning as they are shit in water so they go in the keg for the walk out...
  12. clangingsymbol

    clangingsymbol

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    Well...I personally have Natives...have for 10+ years. However, none have been glass.

    What I really wanted to recommend is getting a sale. I purchase my glasses from REI because (1) I have not found ones I like anyplace else (Native or other brands), (2) I am a member and (3) with membership, I get a 20%-30% off the Garage (Formerly the Outlet) coupon every few months and I wait until I have a combination of glasses I want with price I can afford. I rarely pay over $50 bucks at REI when combined with the extra coupon (but you have to be a member to use the coupon I think).

    What I have done is downgrade my glasses once they have scratched lenses from my street glasses to my canyoneering glasses (like I do most of my non safety gear anyway). That way, if I loose them, no big deal. If I break them...hey...they were "broken" already. And...since I am in water a lot...having a wet lens is no worse then having a scratched one and the optical result is the same until my shirt is dry enough to clean them, which does not seem to happen until I am back to camp (home) and have my street glasses anyway!!!

    https://www.rei.com/rei-garage/sear...86&ir=q:sunglasses&sort=relevance&outlet=true
  13. 2065toyota

    2065toyota

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    I still went out and bought a new pair of nice glass. Anybody who claims the cheapies are almost as good hasn't had a good pair of glasses. And in the long run, I've probably wasted as much money on crappy ones that break and scratch easy and just get thrown away
    townsend likes this.
  14. spinesnaper

    spinesnaper

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    First I am a canyoneer and a board certified ophthalmologist. Most spendy sunglass brands that are not fashion oriented but are marketed to sportsmen will have all the UV blocking and light attenuation you need in a sun glass. The real issue is do you need a custom prescription in your sunglasses? If you do, that wonderful sunglass in your favorite frame will need to be popped out and replaced with an individualized prescription. It gets real expensive, real fast. When you had cataract surgery, did you opt for the expensive multifocal intraocular lens? If not you are going to need to consider your reading prescription as well. My prescription sunglasses have a blended lens so I can read my GPS and map ( or Tom's route descriptions) without taking my sunglasses off. Do you love the amazing wrap around sunglasses? Well if you need a custom prescription, you can forget those type of lens. It is almost impossible to grind a prescription that works with those type of sunglasses unless you mount a prescription lens behind the curved sunglass.
    Hope that helps.
    Ken
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  15. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

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    For spendy sunglasses, I've always liked the Julbo brand.

    I'll admit to pickin' up the cheapo gas station brands because I tend to bust them, scratch, bend, break...(seems like I rarely loose a pair).

    I got an expensive pair of prescription sunglasses but their curvature makes me seasick to wear them, and, they just didn't turn out that sharp.

    So...this thread inspired me (while my eye prescription is still current) to order a new pair of prescription sunglasses. Currently wearing a pair of "computer glasses" I got from Zenni...and I really like them. So...I'll give their sunglasses a try.

    Cheers!
  16. townsend

    townsend

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    Location:
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    Ken,

    I waited for five years to have the surgery. Part of it was changing jobs, changing insurances, but the other part was waiting for multifocal intraocular lens (=IOLSs), which were "just around the corner." At first, that was waiting for the Alcon Restor multifocal toric IOLs. It seemed to take forever, and the FDA finally "pre-approved" them in November 2014. So I kept waiting, and they didn't come out in 2015, and 2016, etc.

    Finally, they were released to "no fanfare" sometime earlier in 2017. (I was following developments on the Internet, and I never saw an announcement.) Then another multifocal IOLs was released -- Tecnis Symfony IOLs. And they made a toric version. These were FDA approved in July 2016. At the time, I was seeing Wayne Bowman, M.D., from UTSW Medical Center (Dallas. I was seeing him on Cobra insurance, but it ran out before the lens were released (no longer than 18 months on Cobra). And as self-employed, he didn't accept any ACA plans.

    Finally, I got everything together this summer -- someone who accepted my worthless ACA plan, the Tecnis Toric Symfony IOLs, and the time to do it. Dr. Whitman (at Key-Whitman) did my surgery. For the non-ophthamologists among us, toric lens correct for astigmatism, and multifocal lens means that they have multiple plans of focus. Simply put, the ranges are usually divided into three "distances": far, median (14-26", for reading a computer monitor), and near. Tecnis provides both far and median. For reading, I still need reading classes. This isn't a deficiency in the IOLs; it is where the technology is at this point, and gives one more "spectable independence" than monofocal IOLs. Yes, the Tecnis IOLs are expensive. BTW, ACA doesn't pay for anything anyway, with huge deductibles (6,800.00 per year). (Let's no get sidetracked on that issue.) The additional cost for upgrading to the "multifocal" IOLs was worth it for me. But ouch!

    Ken, I didnt know that my old lens were so old that they were "amber"!

    So I don't need prescription sunglasses. I may get an expensive "glass" pair for driving and life in general, and a cheaper pair for hanging out in canyons.

    Ken, maybe I can "assist" you someday on a canyoneering adventure. I've been a physician assistant for 18 years, having worked in many surgical disciplines (neuro, ortho, general/bariatric) but now in psychiatry.
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017
  17. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

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    From the Goracle (and the garage):

    - Polarization does not affect the level of UV protection provided by a lens.
    - Reportedly, an optometrist can evaluate the UV protection of your current eyewear (prescription or other). Lenses need not be dark to block UV.

    https://www.livescience.com/6524-sunglasses-carry-shady-uv-protection-claims-study-reveals.html
    http://www.who.int/uv/faq/whatisuv/en/index3.html

    Note: a crude UV-blocking test procedure* revealed that a Smooth Operator provides some degree of UV protection. Good to know in a pinch?

    *enter dark garage, shine UV LED flashlight on UV-sensitive material ($50 bill with fluorescent strip), pass smooth operator between light and strip. Strip brightness faded significantly with UV light beam passing through Smooth Operator. Voila!


    P8134196 copy.
  18. spinesnaper

    spinesnaper

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    Scott IOL's are an imperfect science. And yes, the ACA isn't. Wish our politicians would get off their behinds and work together but that seems to be a pipe dream. The trend in Los Angeles is for no one to take health insurance. I hit you up the next time I am headed out to Southern Utah.

    Hank-I love canyoneering equipment with secret functions like the bottle opener on the Sqwurel. And now the UV blocker in the smooth operator-it's quite stylish.

    Ken
    townsend likes this.
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