Intro: Ray-Ban Repair With Sugru
I'm going to be perfectly honest here. I enjoy me some Ray-Bans. The tacky 70's pornstar* gold-rimmed aviators. They fit my face nicely, they look reasonable in most situations, and they're polarized. And cheap.
Cheap? Ray-Bans? They retail for, like, a lot of money. More than is acceptable for a commonly-misplaced cranial accessory. If I had real ones, they'd be worth more than the rest of my clothing and my shoes... combined. Ray-Bans are normally not cheap. But mine are.
They're fakes from DealExtreme in Hong Kong. Nice fakes, though. The polarized lenses are lovely, but the nose-pieces are a bit on the weak side. I got a good year or so of use out of these $10 glasses, but the nose-piece on the right finally gave up the ghost while I was painting a house. Over some gravel. (No rescuing and re-wiring for me; I couldn't find the missing piece.)
I had almost given up and ordered a new pair when I started working for Instructables. Which provided easy access to a ton of Sugru. Which means... I finally get to fix the glasses! Flexible nose-piece replacements! The comfiest pair of knock-offs in the world**. Keep on clicking for the remarkably easy instructions for fixing your glasses, knock-offs or otherwise.
*My father's description of the glasses, not mine.
**Further scientific research may be needed to substantiate this claim.
Step 1: Materials
- The ones with wire frames and the separate nose-piece are what I had.
- I imagine you could make some Wayfarers a bit more custom and a bit less hipster-y if you really wanted to.
- Pick a color that won't make you go cross-eyed when it's sitting atop your nose for long periods of time.
- I went with white which looks a bit like gum that has seen some time underneath a table.
- You could also try orange, green, blue, or black.
Scissors or a knife
- You probably don't want (or need) to open the Sugru with your teeth unless this is a field repair.
That's all. Maybe use some teeny-tiny pliers if you want to do some bending and adjusting of the wire that the nose-piece attaches to. If you want perfect balance, using a small knife to cut equal-sized pieces of Sugru might help with your anal-retentiveness.
Step 2: Fiddle With Wires
These are cheapo glasses. The wires are thin and may break easily. Be careful. You may need to adjust the nose-piece wires a bit so they fit comfortably.
I brought the wires out from the lenses a bit (about a millimeter or so) in order to have a nice support structure for my Sugru.
Perhaps you're wondering... "How would he know what would be more comfortable? The nose-piece is off." Great question, imaginary reader. Only one of the nose-pieces fell off. I used the other one as a reference point to figure out how I wanted to mold my Sugru. Turns out, I didn't need to make too drastic a change in order to fix it. In fact, you could skip this step if you didn't feel like trying it. If you're fixing a nice pair of prescription or real designer glasses, don't fiddle with the wires at all. Forget this step entirely.
If you're playing with knock-offs, go nuts. Just don't break the wires.
Step 3: Open Up the Sugru
Cut open the packing and use whatever technique you like to divide it into two equal chunks. I know I'm only missing one nose-piece so I only need one little bit of Sugru to make the fix. But I wanted it to be symmetrical. And not ugly.
I eye-balled the amount for one replacement nose-piece. Then I decided I wanted to replace the other as well. To avoid having to guess and pinch off smaller and smaller amounts of Sugru (thereby getting it firmly wedged beneath your fingernails), cut off two even pieces to begin with. Each piece should be a sphere about the size of a penny.
Ball up each Sugru piece as though you were rolling the juiciest booger you've ever picked.
Step 4: Attach the Sugru
Now that you've got a pair of Sugru balls, attach one to each nose-pieceless bit of wire on the sunglasses. Don't smoosh it in there too hard, you don't want to have to scrape any off of your lenses.
You should be able to impale each little ball onto the wire, then press them flat with your thumb and index finger. This will make a general nose-piecey shape that you can then custom-fit to your face.
How do you make them a custom fit? Put the glasses on. Shape the Sugru against your nose until you are satisfied with its shape and comfort. Then take them off, smooth out any ugly bits, and put them someplace safe to dry.
Step 5: Wear Them, Look Awesome
After everything has dried, you'll notice that your glasses don't slip as much. They fit better, too. And they look glorious.
When I do this again (because I will break or lose these eventually), I'll use a color that looks less like used gum one might find under a table in a school. Another good reason to use another color is that white gets dirty. I never realized how filthy the sides of my nose are until I had the white nose-pieces. It's like peeling a hard-boiled egg with dirty hands. Only your hands are your face. And other people will notice your nose-pieces.
And they will be suitably impressed.