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#82493
Lets hear it people, what do you do for eye protection when flying ?

I know that I've been told its an important consideration when towing but I'm thinking its probably a good idea all the time.

Do sunglasses cause any problems with recognizing conditions ???
User avatar
By AP
#82494
Sunglasses are one of the most important pieces of flying equipment.
To fly without would at least be uncomfortable but probably damaging if done for a long time. A good set of glasses lets you see clearly and further. A really good set will aid your flying no end especially XC because certain tints can highlight cloud definition. The best section of cloud base where the strongest lift is is more easily seen when wearing good sunglasses. Even before cloud has formed a good set of sunglasses allow you to spot haze domes. Haze domes are often the initial beginings of a true cloud and sometimes are very difficult to see with the naked eye. On blue days there is often the formation of haze domes so on these days the right pair of glasses are a big help. Glare is also reduced alot so midairs are less likely plus you have a better chance of spotting gliders ahead who are circling in your next climb.

I have a set of Oakley wrap-arounds. The lens has an iridium compound that gives a green-yellow tint, awesome for flying, but a tad expensive though.
User avatar
By Imaposer
#82496
Yep, I think it’s a good idea all the time. I started wearing glasses after my first tandem when I found that the airflow caused my eyes to water. I've also had a large bug hit me in the eye on the T hills and it made landing a bit exciting. I bought my current glasses at a motorcycle shop. They are the semi wrap around type used by many cruiser riders. They also have the yellow tinted lenses like you see on a lot of target shooting safety glasses. I find that the yellow tint really seems to brighten everything and really sharpen contrast. Perhaps it’s just an illusion but it seems to improve my vision as well as protect my eyes from wind blast and/or foreign objects. They also fit well when wearing my helmet.

Edit to add:

I'm sure there are better lenses available and I'll probably upgrade at some point. A friend of mine let me try on his Costa Del Mar glasses and they were awesome but expensive. So far I've been happy with mine and they were fairly cheap.
Last edited by Imaposer on Fri Aug 01, 2008 8:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By Wagner24314
#82498
always you dont want to tear up on landing :thumbsup:
User avatar
By hiflioz
#82501
Hubby and I wear prescription sunnies, light brown-orange tinted. Because of the improved contrast, I can see significantly more with them in the air than with my ordinary specs. The optometrist was initially mystified when I insisted on peering through each differently coloured lens up at the sky, OUTSIDE the shop! The frames we chose are designed for cycling, ie wraparound and snug fit.
Cheers
Helen
User avatar
By Dawson
#82502
I wear Blueye goggles when flying. (see my avatar)

They come with a range of tints, and a spare lens when you buy them. I wanted both the fitted lens, and the spare lens to be red, but they said that they couldn't do that for some reason, so I got Red & Orange. I've only used the red so far, but they're great in-flight.

The only problem with them is that they fog up fi you wear them when you're not flying. This is because they seal around your eyes, and even though there are holes to let some air in and out, the holes are not enough to keep them from fogging up if you're not flying, or facing into a good strong breeze. So i just put them on then pull them forward and onto the "fore-head" of my helmet and bring them down after I've flown away from the hill.
User avatar
By xerxes
#82506
I have Rx sunglasses (brown gradient tint) that do a really good job of highlighting reds and greens. I wear them when driving but not flying. I think 'natural' color and brightness are the best for picking out distances, clouds etc. I definitely wear them around launch and in the LZ, it's just too damn bright sometimes!
User avatar
By DanTuck
#82511
I also wear Rx sungalsses even on cloudy days. The last time I went to my doctor I told him I was learning to hang glide and I wanted to see like a hawk. I see about 20/15 with the prescription he gave me and they are shaded gray because I like seeing the true colors, just darkened. They are polarized which I believe helps with cloud definition. I can imagine that being polarized makes it difficult to read some varios but fortunately I can read mine just fine.
User avatar
By Mrsposer
#82517
Imaposer wrote:Yep, I think it’s a good idea all the time. I started wearing glasses after my first tandem when I found that the airflow caused my eyes to water. I've also had a large bug hit me in the eye on the T hills and it made landing a bit exciting. I bought my current glasses at a motorcycle shop. They are the semi wrap around type used by many cruiser riders. They also have the yellow tinted lenses like you see on a lot of target shooting safety glasses. I find that the yellow tint really seems to brighten everything and really sharpen contrast. Perhaps it’s just an illusion but it seems to improve my vision as well as protect my eyes from wind blast and/or foreign objects. They also fit well when wearing my helmet.

Edit to add:

I'm sure there are better lenses available and I'll probably upgrade at some point. A friend of mine let me try on his Costa Del Mar glasses and they were awesome but expensive. So far I've been happy with mine and they were fairly cheap.

Oh, YOU got a bug in YOUR eye??? :lol: I find that quite funny since you are always making fun of me for the same thing.


Jaime, have a look at Randy's glasses next time we see you. I have used them for my tandems and they do work well. They look stupid....but they work well. :wink:
User avatar
By red
#82531
Murphy's Laws of Combat,

#6. If it's stupid but it works, it isn't stupid.

I normally wear prescription eyeglasses, so mine are Safety-rated. I just want to put in a plug for 100% UV blocking, both UVA and UVB. Everything looks the same, whether the lenses block UV or not, so use the UV-safe ones. The Ozone layer of the atmosphere was once good UV protection, but a lot of that is gone, now. Just like any sunburn, if you get too much UV exposure, the damage can be *permanent.* There are no replacements for eyes, or optic nerves.
User avatar
By AIRTHUG
#82540
I have contacts, and like to fly fast, so glasses or goggles are a must for me... I wear blueye goggles, red lenses...

Here are a couple things to think about- first, if you're going to wear sunglasses, get ones with PLASTIC, shatter-proof lenses... the more expensive sunglasses use real GLASS lenses, and if you were ever to hit hard and break your glasses, you do NOT want broken glass in your eyes!!!!!!!!!

Also, polarized lenses are great for cutting glare and seeing clouds and whatnot... the other day I was driving and saw a dust devil that the other person in the car couldn't see... I gave them my sunglasses and they could now see it, but I couldn't. It looked so obvious with the glasses on, yet invisible without... wild. BUT- THERE'S A CATCH TO POLARIZED LENSES, they make it harder to read LCD screens... so your vario, GPS, radio, even digital wrist watch will be much harder to read with polarized lenses...
User avatar
By CHassan
#82543
Choosing Tint Color

Because white light is made up of many colors, picking tints carefully can improve the performance of your eyewear in specific environments and activities.

A rose tint is cosmetically appealing, soothing to the eyes, and seems to provide a degree of relief when the wearer is working in brightly lit offices. A rose tint is often recommended for computer users to help reduce eyestrain and glare.

A yellow tint makes objects appear sharper against a blue or green background. Blue light bounces or scatters the most and can create a kind of glare known as "blue haze". Yellow tints are sometimes marketed as "blue blockers" because they are fairly opaque to blue light. Yellow tints are good for overcast, hazy or foggy conditions and are a favorite of shooters, skiers and pilots. Yellow is generally NOT a good choice for any activity that depends on accurate color perception.

Brown and amber tints work well in variable light conditions and provide good contrast because they filter some blue light, although not as strongly as a yellow tint. Brown lenses are good general purpose lenses and work especially well for sports where judging distance is important like tennis and golf.

Green tints filter some blue light and enhance contrast in low-light conditions. The human eye is most sensitive to green wavelengths of light so green tints offer the highest contrast and greatest visual acuity of any tint.

Grey - A grey tint provides good protection from glare and keeps distortion of colors to a minimum. Grey is sometimes referred to as a "tru-color" tint. Grey is available in a wide range of densities and is an excellent choice for general use and driving. Grey is the most popular sunglass tint.

G-15 - This sunglass tint is sometimes called the "Ray-Ban" tint. It is essentially a combination of a grey and green tint that transmits 15% (blocks 85%) of the light.

Purple is balanced color which provides natural color perception while shading the eye. Purple lenses can be a good choice for hunters.


Blue can be a good choice for fashion tints in lighter shades. If the lenses are intended for outdoor use, remember that blue tints can increase glare. In this case, consider using a brown or grey lens combined with a blue mirror coating.

A “gradient tint” describes a lens with a darker tint at the top, fading gradually to little or no tint at the bottom of the lens. This provides additional protection from light coming from above, without blocking too much light from straight ahead or below. Gradient sunglasses work particularly well for driving; glare coming through the windshield is blocked but the speedometer and other instruments are easy to see through the lighter bottom portion of the lens.

Double gradient tint - A “double gradient tint” describes a lens with a darker tint at the top and bottom of the lens, and a medium tint in the center of the lens. Double gradient tints are good for skiers, because glare coming from above (sun) and below (snow) is heavily blocked but a clearer viewing area is present in the middle of the lens.

Mirror Lenses - A mirror coating applied to the outside of a lens helps deflect reflected light. The outside of the lens looks just like a mirror but the wearer sees only the tint.

"Fun" Photochromics - Some plastic photochromic lenses are available in unusual colors. These lenses are one color when UV light is not present but change to a totally different color when activated by UV. There are teal-blue lenses that change to green, yellow lenses that change to orange, and red lenses that change to purple.

Ultraviolet (UV) Protection - Lenses with ultraviolet (UV) protection prevent potentially harmful radiation from reaching your eyes. According to United States Federal law, all sunglasses sold in the United States must have UV protection. However, many low-priced sunglasses for sale through street vendors do not comply with this rule. Using tinted sunglass lenses without UV protection is extremely damaging to your eyes, because the dark tint causes your pupils to dilate and increases the surface area of your retina that can be damaged by the ultraviolet radiation.
User avatar
By Sky_Walker
#82545
Awesome information, especially with regards to different tints (thanks Chassan).

I need to go with ZZ Top - cheap sunglasses. I could lose a dozen pair a week, sunglasses are just one of those things I can never seem to keep up with. It might be different if I kept it with my flying gear, but if I bought a nice pair I'd want to use them when driving and next thing you know they would be gone.

Appreciate all the answers, you guys and gals never let me down.
User avatar
By soarass
#82553
When I started gearing up for hanggliding, I realized the old clip-ons for my prescription glasses weren't getting it anymore. After trying on some frames in an obliging optometrists shop, I settled on Wiley X's. You can order the prescription online and get a better price on the frame, too, direct from Wiley X. Getting a set of prescription wraparound bifocals for the first time is THE s---! The polarized option is well worth the price, you pick out details easily. The specs come with the zipup rigid case and two different leash/straps. Great buy for hang gliding specs, if you need a prescription, and they EXCEED all the safety glasses specs (read testimonies from soldiers in the Middle East. Last but not least, now I look so f@$%#!! cool, I'm constantly checking my reflection in the rearview mirror! Joel :mosh:
User avatar
By steve555
#82563
Not much more I can add to this thread other than polarized glasses will make pooled water hidden among grass shimmer in a weird way.

During the spring thaw our local field is often muddy with only a few high spots to land on without getting your shoes soaked.

Polarized glasses let me know well in advance not only where the high spots are but also if there is a way to get off of the high spot without wading thru standing water.
User avatar
By rafaelcjr
#82564
I buy them cheap at Walmart
Pay around $15 to $20 bucks
- mostly the Amber / light Amber colored Polarized with UV protection

The trick in Walmart is to get them in the Fishing section of the
Sporting goods department in the back - they have the better
sunglasses there.


For a wider selection and really expensive ones - you can
try Bass Proshops fishing dept.
User avatar
By Tex
#82573
I wear UVEX Cybric safety glasses, with the brown/sunglare tint. They seem to fit me well and do not let wind in. As menetioned avoid 'glass' glasses escpescially if towing, (I had a ring kick back once and smack me right on the bridge of the nose/glasses, eyes watering I managed to land with what I thought was a broken nose, could hardy see, both plastic lenses had popped out and fell to earth, turns out while my nose was twice the size, it was still intact) .

Another tip I got was hold the glasses slightly away from normal position and raise/lower them so you alternate from looking through them, to not looking through them. If the earth moves then they are distorting your vision accordingly (but equally). Not so good if you like hot low approaches. Not sure how true it is but seems to make sense.

UVEX Cybric cheap enough to have a few pairs lying around ($12).
http://www.uvex-safety.com/uvex/safety/ ... 140002F779
User avatar
By hiflioz
#82576
red wrote: <snip>
I normally wear prescription eyeglasses, so mine are Safety-rated. I just want to put in a plug for 100% UV blocking, both UVA and UVB. Everything looks the same, whether the lenses block UV or not, so use the UV-safe ones. .... Just like any sunburn, if you get too much UV exposure, the damage can be *permanent.* There are no replacements for eyes, or optic nerves.
Hiya Red
UV, and more: for decades I bought my specs from a large Australian franchise, OPSM, and was perfectly happy with what I got. Then for the first time this year I went to my local spectacle maker and realised that, just as in eateries, there are restaurants and there are fast-food outlets, with commensurate differences not only in price, but quality. The franchise I'd previously patronised had a huge range of frames, but did not stock some of the pricier but better quality lenses. I didn't even know the latter existed!

The lenses I bought were identical in colour, non-reflective finish, polarising, UV protection etc to my old ones, but the quality of the plastic is significantly higher. I put those sunnies on for the first time and was blown away by the difference in optics - I've never worn specs that are so clear and sharp (and I've been wearing spects for 30 years!). For those who wear prescription sunnies, I highly recommend paying a bit extra for quality because you'll appreciate it every time you put them on.
User avatar
By Sky_Walker
#82578
UVEX Cybric cheap enough to have a few pairs lying around ($12).
Wow I really like these, apparently they are way too cool and inexpensive to be sold here in the US. Seems only the Uvex models around 100$ available state side, go figure.

Based on the tint information provided by Chassan, I'm gonna order both a pair of amber and a pair of grey.

Guess I'l have to have them shipped from overseas :cuss:

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