When I’m out with my riding partner, I can virtually turn off my own cycling computer because I can just about read the HUGE text on his computer from the other side of the road! My cycling buddy, (let’s call him Phil) bought a Garmin 800 literally just because it had the biggest screen he could find.
Far-sightedness is actually quite common, and after speaking with the eyewear brand Dual Eyewear I have learnt that many riders suffer similarly, or worse! Dual Eyewear have spotted a need and created sports sunglasses (including cycling-specific models) with a bifocal section. The lenses have a magnification section on the inside lower corners of up to +2.5, while the rest is a standard (non-prescription) lens.
My friend, Phil, was really excited to hear about this solution and through BNA, Dual Eyewear lined him up with a pair of SL2 Pro glasses in “smoke” colour – and believe me, he’s given them a workout. You see, while some things we buy are neat but end up on the shelf before long – these days, Phil never rides without his SL2 Pro’s.
That’s despite owning a pair of multifocal prescription glasses that cost well over $700! I’ll explain why in a moment.
After he had time to become familiar with the glasses, I asked him what he liked about them, and here’s how he responded:
• The magnification area is quite small
• They’re comfortable and wrap around well
• They’re light
• They look good
On the other hand, this is what he didn’t like:
I laughed and said, “No, that’s not how it works, you need to give a balanced view.”
So he said “They must be expensive”
I told him “They aren’t”
He said “I guess you could say they’re a bit ‘racy’ for some people”
I told him “There are 14 other styles available”
He pondered “Different lenses?”
I countered, “Yep, 2 – Clear and Amber”
Finally we decided that if we had to nitpick it would be good if the magnification came in more discrete levels (they’re currently available in +1.5, +2.0 and +2.5). Phil’s prescription was supposed to be +1.75 so he went with the +1.5. However, as it turns out, they still worked perfectly.
Earlier, I promised you an explanation of why Phil now rides only with his $84.95 SL2 Pro’s over his custom designed $700 multifocal glasses. So why is it?
Well Phil tells me that very small magnification area is perfect for cycling. Standard mutlifocal lenses are definitely more practical for day-to-day activities (like driving, etc) because your dashboard, desk, etc. takes up quite a large portion of your field of view. Yet on the bike, it’s only a very small patch of the lens through which you read your computer. So for that reason, the SL2 Pro’s are a very elegant solution.
For Phil these glasses do exactly what he needs; they look good, are comfortable, and allows him read his cycling computer at the same price you might pay for any other mid-range pair of standard sports sunglasses.
The SL2 Pro sunglasses are available from selected retailers for $84.95. You can find out more about the sunglasses and where to get them from: dualeyewear.com.au. There are a number of new Dual Eyewear models available this year including the super-cool V8G and V8W styles.