Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: western Massachusetts
Stick-on Lenses for Reading
This may be the best $20 I’ve spent on motorcycling in years. As a member of the half-century club, reading glasses have become part of my life (search “presbyopia”). One activity where reading glasses did not find a place was riding a motorcycle. Dedicated readers are no good for distance viewing. I don't like readers that sit at the end of my nose and besides those would interfere with the slide-down sun visor in my Nolan modular helmet.
My dear friend Dr. Bob, as innovative a problem-solver as I know, found a solution: stick-on reading lenses. If you've ever seen safety glasses with built-in reader lenses, it's the same idea. Actually it's just like any bifocal you've seen, just attached rather than ground in. Seems they are popular with divers who put them on their masks. If you like to read at the beach, you could stick these to your favorite sunglasses. Dr. Bob stuck a set to his helmet’s sun visor. Genius! Your humble scribe had to try them.
An internet search led me to OPTX 20/20 Stick-On Lenses for Reading. I found them on eBay and Amazon and understand they can be found in many dive shops, too. The lenses are clear, slightly curved halfmoons. You wet the mating surfaces (the convex surface of the lens and, in my case, the concave surface of the sun visor), press the lenses in place, squeeze out water with a lint-free cloth and let them dry overnight. It took some trial and error to get the width spacing right but they are easy to reposition while wet. They were a bit oversized for my application, so using sharp scissors I trimmed the rounded edge flat to fit the straight edge of the sun visor. (See photo.) The whole operation took about 15 minutes including trimming and spacing.
So, do they work? YES! They're completely out of the way for far-distance viewing of the road ahead. They’re exactly where they belong for near-distance viewing of the gauges and GPS. My daughter’s photo (the one down by the speedometer that reminds me to ‘keep it under 100’) is back in focus.
In my experience the lenses stay in place, even when cleaning the sun visor, and even through three hours of steady rain in Maine last weekend. The directions say if you want to remove them it’s just a matter of prying them off with your fingernail, and you can use them over and over. The directions also say “do not use while driving” but millions of people wear prescription bifocals or trifocals to provide clear vision at different focal length while driving, so I’m not buying that. Too many lawyers…
My stick-on lenses are 1.25 magnification and I also saw 1.50, 1.75, 2.00, 2.50 and 3.00. Consider the distance from your visor to whatever you want to read, and select the magnification power that works for you. If you’re not sure, go to the reading glasses display at your local pharmacy and you’ll find an eye chart that helps you select the right power. Who knows, maybe your pharmacy even sells stick-on reading lenses!
Bottom line: stick-on readers are great for adding the magnification my not-so-young-anymore eyes need to see the gauges and GPS on my motorcycles clearly. After last weekend’s tour in Maine, I wouldn't be without them.
Kudos to Dr. Bob!
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Last edited by Bones; 09-11-2013 at 03:04 PM.