Solid Wooden Sunglasses





Introduction: Solid Wooden Sunglasses

About: Hi, I'm Alex Harris, Engineering student and "YouTube woodworker". For more about me, visit my website:

Mid last year I made these sunglasses and I thought I would share them here. Check out the video above to see how I made them! Thanks to my beautiful baby sister for kindly modelling these! It's much better than seeing them on me.

Step 1: The Lenses

First up, we'll need some lenses. I ripped some out a plastic pair of sunglasses I got free!

Step 2: The Templates

Using the original sunglasses I produced some 1:1 cutting templates. If you are using similar sized lenses you can download the ones I used from my website:

Step 3: Attaching the Templates

Next, the templates are stuck to the rough blank with a little wood glue.

Step 4: Cutting Out the Frames

Using the scrollsaw the frames are cut roughly to shape, If you don't have a scrollsaw you can do this by hand, it's just going to take a while!

Step 5: Cutting the Frames 2

To cut the opening for the lenses drill through the blank and thread through the blade. Leave the cavity slightly over-sized at this point.

Step 6: Cutting the Temples

The temples (or arms) are cut out in the same way.

Step 7: Fitting the Lenses

Align each lens properly and trace around them with a pencil. Sand close to the marked line, leaving a small rim just under 1mm (IMPORTANT) I used a drum sanding attachment at the drill press to do this.

Step 8: Shaping

The final shape cannot be achieved on the scrollsaw, so using a small handsaw cut away the remaining material and use a hand-file to shape. The original sunglasses serve as a good reference when doing this.

Step 9: Shaping 2

Using sanding attachments, sand to the final shape. (If you don't have these some careful filing and sandpaper should work.)

Step 10: Fitting the Lenses 2

Now to cut the rim for the lenses. Using a rotary cutting disk mounted in the drill press for ease, I cut a shallow groove around the edge of the lens cavity, for the lens to slot in to. This will take some care and a bit of trial and error, but should work if you are careful.

Step 11: The Hinges

Next is the hinges. I could have made some tiny wooden hinges, but it was far easier to cut them off of an old pair of cheap plastic ones!

Step 12: Fitting the Hinges

To attach the hinges mark the position and cut a small cavity on both the front and temples of the glasses. (I used a small drill bit to do this.)

Step 13: Gluing the Hinges

The hinges were glued into the cavities with some quick-set epoxy.

Step 14: Applying the Finish

Finally a finish can be applied to the glasses, before the lenses are pressed into place. For a finish I used mineral oil just to be safe, but I am sure that some spray lacquer would be fine too!



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    31 Discussions


    what kind of wood did you use and where do you recommend we get it?

    Well done! You should treat yourself and those frames to a nice pare of polarized lenses! Its a disgrace to use the cheep ones in when you've crafted the rest of the sunglass so nicely! Great cheep project though.

    1 reply

    Do you know where to buy the polarized lenses for this style of glasses? I can't find any for under $30

    They are great but knowing me I would either leave them in the pub or sit on them -- cue heart broken!!

    Definitely gonna try to make these this summer, but with actual lenses since I have terrible vision :P These are so cool!

    You glasses looks grate:) i like that they are crafted by hand ( no cnc).

    Just don't forget that prescription lenses factor in pupilary distance and have a focal point... there's a lot more precision required than for non-corrective lenses.

    Wow they look awesome! You've got some nice skills! You make the sunglasses yourself while others buy them for a lot of mony at a (desing) shop!!

    keep your work up - i'm looking forward to seeing new projects


    3 years ago

    That takes proper skills nothing I could do they look lovely I imagine you could sell a few of those
    I was always annoyed at school the boys got to do woodwork and girls had to do home economics it was so unfair from a very early age I used to stare longingly in to the workshop classrooms and my brothers told me id do them for at 11 lying watsits

    This is great, admirable.Very nice work, congratulations!!

    Awesome! People love hand made items. Do u sell any on Etsy?


    3 years ago

    How do you attach the lens at the end

    1 reply

    Apologies, looks like I missed that! They are just pressed into the rim cut on the inside edge of the frame. It is easy to see what happens in the video.