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Polarized Sunglasses! Do they really make a difference?


Mark O'Donnell
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Hi ISA guys,

 

I've only used cheap sunglasses due to the fact that I usually lose a couple pairs every year! However if polaroids make that much differenecr I think I could find a way to be a little more aware of where I put them!

What is a good brand? How much should one expect to pay for quality?

 

Thanks,

 

Mark O'Donnell

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If you are in the area, go to the Kane County Flea Market on the first weekend of any month. Find the guy who has the sunglasses booth. Get any of the polarized glasses you like. They are designer knock-offs but have the same build/lenses. I get the Killer Loop kind, but have also used the Gargoyle and Ray Ban knock-offs. For $10-$15 a pair you can get several different lens shades and be covered for any light situation. I use grey tints and amber tints depending on bright or sunny. I've looked at the same water wearing those and changing immediately over to Batwings or Maui Jims (other guys glasses) and have seen the same thing if not more with my $15 knock off Ray Bans or Killer Loop polarized from Kane County.

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I used Maui Jim's for 8 years.

 

Look up the lens stats for quality glasses like those or Oakley's or other quality pairs.

 

If a guy in a flea market can sell the same lenses for 95% less?

 

I don't think so....

 

Say I think I'll get my next Porsche at the flea market. There's a guy selling em there for $2,000. He swears it's the exact same engine.

 

A lot of lenses work for polarization, but it's really the quality (clarity) that makes higher end glasses better. Wearing a pair of cheap ones for five or six hours makes

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I've been using cheap Strike King polarized glasses from Wal Mart for years. Most of the pricey sunglasses have curved lenses but due to something with my eyes, that curve adds distortion. The flatter lenses on the inexpensive glasses work very well for me.

It's funny, polarization is to me, the most important feature on sunglasses and few of the most expensive sunglasses you can buy are polarized.

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I'd be too worried about losing or breaking any sunglasses that cost more than thirty bucks. I buy cheap polarized. It seems that the price of a pair of shades is inversely proportionate to their lifespan.

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I've never owned a high end pair of sunglasses, but as with any optics, I would presume a higher quality lens would offer the best performance. I have used polarized sunglasses forever and they make a big difference over regular sunglasses and a huge difference over none at all, especially for safe wading. Start with a "cheap" pair and see if it makes a difference for you.

 

I buy cheap polarized. It seems that the price of a pair of shades is inversely proportionate to their lifespan.

 

LOL!

 

Same holds true if they are newer!

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As a 7 year Maui Jim owner I second Joz's opinion. You get what you pay for.

 

If I had cool 300 bucks laying around doing nothing (and I don't) there would be a pair of Oakley Half Jackets sitting on my nose. Now that is one bitchin' pair of shades!

 

I was rumaging through the attic the other day and found a pair of Oakley Factory Pilots (circa 1985), one of the very first if not the first glasses Oakley ever made. Retro, baby!

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To me, a good pair of glasses are ones that you forget are there. They should never slip or get in the way.

 

You define Maui Jims with this statement. They never slip and after acouple of minutes on your face you forget they are there.

As a matter of fact if I raise them up on my forehead to see something more clearly in the shade I usually forget they are up there until the river glare hits me again. Yeah I know that could be an age thing to. :)

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Joz,

I should add that I've had the expensive sunglasses like Gargoyles and Maui Jims (print for Maui Jim :D ), but I've also left a pair at a cottage and scratched a couple others. I just can't see dropping that kind of cash for glasses that do the exact same thing only to potentially drop them on the rocks.

Trust me. The knock-offs are doing just fine by me. Most comfortable shades I ever owned are the Killer Loop knock-offs. We'll trade glasses for a minute one day on the water and I defy you to pick out a smallie I don't see.

 

 

Then again, considering the age difference, I don't think I'd do well in your Harry Carry bifocal sunglasses. I mean, unless I'm lookin' to pick up some old ch.....

I'm gonna stop that joke right there. heh heh.

:)

 

But seriously, no matter what kind of glasses you go with, just make sure they are good for you. It's all about what you're comfortable with and what lets you see structure and/or fish. Like I said, I've had the Mauis and the Gargoyles and for me personally the knock offs are the same and just as comfortable. As I wrote about in my last article in the newsletter, we caught hundreds of summer smallies in July at Pipestone. Alot of them we saw in packs, picked out, and caught. What a blast! Sometimes it's like that on the clearer portions of the local rivers too, just have to be sneaky and quiet and you'll get close enough to see them without disturbing them. If it hadn't been for the specs we'd have gone right over those smallies and a couple muskies as well. That brings up another good point for muskie guys...get glasses that work. You HAVE to be able to see 'em coming sometimes so you know when to pull the trigger on the figure 8.

My partner and I have written on our site about the negative aspects of fishing for spawning bass. We are totally against that. We've seen guys wearing polarized glasses on Delavan while picking out spawners one after another. That's just unfair. That's why when the bass are spawning we go for pike or panfish or just schedule the trip after the spawn.

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Find it? He's wearin one.

 

Ouch.

 

A polarization story: I took my nine year old niece to the river this summer to catch a tadpole for her aquarium. For some reason, they were few and far between. Finally I saw a big one amongst some underwater debris. Being a hardheaded child, she did not want a tadpole I caught...no, she had to catch her own tadpole.

 

I pointed it out to her and she saw nothing. "Here, try my magic glasses" as I handed her my El Cheapo polarized glasses. The look on her face was priceless. She was freaked out by what she could see that she'd been missing. It was like I gave her a pair of X-ray glasses.

 

Yes, she caught the tadpole, and told everyone back at home about Uncle Jude's Magic Glasses.

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Back in the days when I used to play golf a few times a week, a good friend would always have some stylish/very expensive sunglasses on his forehead or in his possession at all times.

One day while playing, he set the glasses in the golf cart....took off after his shot and noticed they were gone after traveling about 10 feet.

Backed the cart up and heard "crrruuunch!"

Yep- another $150 pair of glasses ruined under the wheels of a friggin' golf cart.

As I remember, these kinds of incidents happened more than once.

 

I learned 2 lessons on that day.

 

#1 Tangueray and golf don't mix.

#2 If you must drink, stick with the spinning carousel at the convenience store for your sunglasses.

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Don,

Good point about the safety glasses for us industrial types! I totally forgot that I have brought out a pair of UVEX glasses that were even better than any of the big money brands. Being industrial safety grade they'd have to perform better. The polarized glasses we have here stop ALL UV (which in UV printing is kind of a must otherwise we'd all be blind in no time) and are polarized. I also like the Body Glove brand that are sold thru Lab Safety. http://www.labsafety.com/store/Safety_Supp..._Glasses/54552/ As well as the Smith & Wesson http://www.labsafety.com/store/Safety_Supp...isredirect=true (I'm thinking THOSE would probably stand up better than anything in the $200 range). I also like the AOsafety brand http://www.labsafety.com/store/Safety_Supp...isredirect=true

 

That's probably the best tip I've heard yet Don.

 

Maybe I just can't get myself to buy Hawiian sunglasses that are made in Peoria. But I don't think they'd sell if they called them Peoria Pete's.

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Hi ISA guys,

 

I've only used cheap sunglasses due to the fact that I usually lose a couple pairs every year! However if polaroids make that much differenecr I think I could find a way to be a little more aware of where I put them!

What is a good brand? How much should one expect to pay for quality?

 

Thanks,

 

Mark O'Donnell

 

I have used cheap polarized sunglasses before and was happy with their performance. However, I can't see without my prescription glasses. This past year I bought a pair of prescription polarized sunglasses. They are expensive, but because I need them for driving and other activities I take meticulous care of them and always keep them in a hard case. I have never been happier...I wish I bought them years ago! I highly recommend buying them for anyone who wears glasses. Sure you can by the polar's to go over your glasses but it's very awkward. It's just not the same.

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Safety glasses. Aye, aye, aye.

 

The safety Nazis at my work force us to wear them. I can't wait to take those miserable mother !@#$ers off every day. The only positive note is that once the headaches cease you become desensitized to the blurred vision. I hate them with my whole soul.

Safety glasses are designed to withstand MAJOR IMPACT and to be cheap enough for factories to GIVE them away. Have you ever read what that impact standard is? Don't quote me, but it's something like 2 kg dropped on them without breaking AND a pellet at 100 fps. And for those two criteria one pays a price in optics.

In no way do they compare to MJ's, Costas, Hobies, Smith Optics ETC, designed for exceptionaly clear optics, superior polarization and glare reduction.. especially those with glass lenses and those that are coated on both sides.

It also should be said that a pair of high end shades is something that you come to appreciate with time, like a really nice high end fishing rod. After having it a while and picking up another rod you immediatly notice the difference in weight and sensitivity. I've tried on the shades at walmart, the quality is laughable by comparison.

I paid something like a 150 bucks for mine. If you have them for 10 years, thats 15 bucks a year. A small price to pay for something that will truly enhance your outdoor experience...especially if you fish clear water. Furthurmore it should be mentioned that my MJs did break at the hinge. I sent them back to Peoria and they reset them in new frames for free.

 

If you are too clumsy (or drunk) to hold on to something like a pair of glasses (I don't understand this either as most people would chew their kids asses for losing a pair of glasses) or you just can't afford them, then fine, seek an alternative. That is understandable. Do what you have to. Any polarized glasses are better than none.

But make no mistake there is a mighty diffence from a pair of walmart shades and some high end polarized shades. That is why they cost big bucks. In no way are they the same thing.

On some products you pay for a name. Like designer clothes. Other products you pay for a name that has gained a reputation for exceptional quality, workmanship and or warranty. Names like Loomis and Simms come to mind. That is the case with Maui Jim.

Though a Pinto and a Ferrari basically perform the same function a Pinto will never be a Ferrari no matter how much you imagine it to.

 

All that said, you will look like an uber-dork wearing safety glasses in public.

 

IMHO, Safety glasses are for work and only work, not play.

 

Here are some deals on fishing glasses:

 

http://www.sierratradingpost.com/d/4374_Sunglasses.html

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Hi ISA guys,

 

I've only used cheap sunglasses due to the fact that I usually lose a couple pairs every year! However if polaroids make that much differenecr I think I could find a way to be a little more aware of where I put them!

What is a good brand? How much should one expect to pay for quality?

 

Thanks,

 

Mark O'Donnell

 

Mark O.,

 

In my humble opinion I do believe that polarized sunglasses are much better at reducing glare then nonpolarized sunglasses.

 

I've only purchased the lower end sunglasses because I can't afford the more expensive brands. Hopefully the posts prior to mine have given you some quality information regarding brands and how much to pay for their quality.

 

I fully understand losing your glasses Mark. It happens to the best of us. Even when we're sober ;)

 

I think Eric has some great advice in his post. Good fitting,lightweight and get croakers to prevent loss...excellent!

 

Don

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