Stick-on Lenses for Reading - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-11-2013, 10:35 AM Thread Starter
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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.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-11-2013, 10:48 AM
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Bones - FWIW, when I was flying w/ "old" guys, lots of times they'd need their reading glasses, and it took quite some TIME for them to find them....

So, when I started having troubles reading my approach charts at night, I went to an optometrist and had him make me glasses that had NO correction for distance, but had 'blended' bifocals for reading, figuring I'd NEED glasses sooner-or-later, so I'd just put these on my face each morning and not have to look for them.

Later when I needed some correction, it was easy - I was ALREADY used to wearing glasses!

Ed
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-11-2013, 12:41 PM Thread Starter
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Eddie, my opthamologist suggested the same thing but they cost $250 and aren't covered by the optical insurance because they aren't prescription. I discovered that reading bifocals (clear up top, magnifying below) are available over-the-counter for cheap. There are many styles available here and I've scored a couple pairs at the dollar store, too. Like you, I put them on and have them with me when I need to see something up close (like what I'm reading or eating). For the bike it's nice having that capability built in so I don't have to deal with glasses and a helmet.


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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-11-2013, 03:31 PM
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Although not quite the same issue, I got a set of sunglasses last year at annual eye exam time. I went with wrap-around frames (Wiley's), and progressive lenses. Expensive stuff.

Then I found out the following:
  • Wraparound frames and tight-fitting motorcycle helmets don't play well together. The snug fit of the helmet applies quite a bit of pressure to the earpieces on the frames, distorting the curve of the lenses and pretty much screwing up 20/20 vision with the glasses.
  • Progressive lenses are great for looking down and seeing things (like the speedo, tach, etc.) clearly. Unfortunately, with a full face shield, all you see is the lining around the shield opening. You can strain your neck and move your eyes around all you want, but it is physically impossible to use the 'reading' part of the progressive lens).

So now I have a pair of nice wraparound glasses for driving, hiking, etc. and a new pair of basic sunglasses for the bike.

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-11-2013, 03:59 PM
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I have to wear my contacts when on the bike because I wear vintage glasses with cable temples. I also need bifocals. So, I found these: http://www.aerostich.com/clothing/su...g-glasses.html

I bought both in clear and smoke ($15 and $16) and the work great. It puts the bifocal right where I need to see the instruments, GPS, maps and looking in the tankbag.

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-11-2013, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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Good idea. I've got something similar (linky) that I use for working on the bike, reading at the beach, etc., but there's not much space between the sun visor on my Nolan and the glasses so the stick-ons are a better solution. I should probably keep my spare pair of clear glasses with readers in the tank bag to use when the sun's not out!


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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-11-2013, 08:12 PM
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I purchased a pair of Aviator style bifocal (reading) sun glasses at the local WallyWorld for approx $15 that do the job and fit nicely inside my full face helmet.


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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2013, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jmason View Post
...Progressive lenses are great for looking down and seeing things (like the speedo, tach, etc.) clearly. Unfortunately, with a full face shield, all you see is the lining around the shield opening. You can strain your neck and move your eyes around all you want, but it is physically impossible to use the 'reading' part of the progressive lens)....
My helmets (AGV full face, as well as modular KBCs) ALL allow me to read instruments, GPS, etc w/ the 'reading correction', and not see the helmet lining. Additionally, my glasses have "transition" lenses, so they replace sunglasses, and I've not had problems entering tunnels from a sunny area.

Ed
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2013, 03:41 PM
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Ever considered LASIK? Not sure if it helps with your particular type of poor eye sight, but I got it at the rip old age of 23 and I've never once regretted it. Perfect vision! No glasses!
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2013, 04:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SauceyFeet View Post
Ever considered LASIK? Not sure if it helps with your particular type of poor eye sight, but I got it at the rip old age of 23 and I've never once regretted it. Perfect vision! No glasses!
Had Lasiks done over 14 years ago but as you get older you will need reading glasses.

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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-13-2013, 01:09 AM
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I've worn bifocals since I was five. I now have four pair of glasses that get changed when my correction changes. Active outdoor stuff glasses, polarized sun glasses, computer glasses and my regular glasses.

I wear Rudy Project glasses for various outdoor activities with an Rx insert in them. Works great! I got the insert as distance vision only. I use the stick ons to add a small bifocal for activities where I need it. Works really well.

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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-13-2013, 11:14 AM
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Ever considered LASIK? Not sure if it helps with your particular type of poor eye sight, but I got it at the rip old age of 23 and I've never once regretted it. Perfect vision! No glasses!
My wife had her eyes "lazered", and can NOT drive at night due "ringing" around sources of light, plus she can NOT tell whether an oncoming car is in HER lane or not. Quite a few people have this problem after LASIK.

Ed
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-13-2013, 11:56 AM
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One nice thing about glasses...you can always get another pair.
You only have two eyes.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-13-2013, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by SauceyFeet View Post
Ever considered LASIK? Not sure if it helps with your particular type of poor eye sight...
Lasik is not for presbyopia, which is why I (and tons of other people over 40) wear readers.


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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-14-2013, 10:20 PM
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Incidentally - someone posted that buying a pair of prescription "readers" w/ plain 'glass' in the rest of the lens would cost about $250. I buy TWO pairs of glasses at Costco in AZ, for $250, and that includes 'blended' bi-focals and 'transition' darkening lenses, on NEW frames.

Ed
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-15-2013, 03:38 AM
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I was in a Super Walmart in San Antionio in 2008. You could get an eye exam and two pairs of glasses for 99.00.
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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-15-2013, 08:14 AM
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Stick-on lenses have been a great solution for my tired eyes. They must be popular because every one of the merchants I've visited on line is temporarily out of stock.

As I recall I found my first pair (set?) at a drug store - though I can't remember if it was Rite Aid, CVS, or Walgreens. Guess it's time to take my Partsheimers medicine again.

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