RAGBRAI LI Day Passes are still available!


I am wondering if anyone has suggestions for sunglasses when you wear prescription eyeglasses.

21 Replies

Pirate Brewer, February 2, 2012 at 10:24 pm

One or two years I used a sun clip on my glasses.  I never cared for the clip because it’s another set set of lens to clean and a pain to care for them when not in use.  Since then I’ve been using a pair of glasses with transition lens and they have been much better.


busymike, February 2, 2012 at 10:26 pm

I have bad eyes so most cycling glasses wont work for me. I found some Rayban sunglasses I liked at Lenscrafters and then went online and ordered them. got them for about $150 with lenses. They’re big enough so that wind doesn’t sweep through and bother my eyes while riding.


busymike, February 2, 2012 at 10:27 pm

i’m wearing them in my pic (they came in the mail 2 days before ragbrai!)


“Bicycle Bill”, February 2, 2012 at 10:44 pm

Get a pair of prescription sunglasses made up.  I got my first pair of Rx sunglasses back in the mid-1980s after more than 20 years of trying to get by with clip-ons that never seemed to work, and am still kicking myself from time to time for not having gone that route sooner.

If you’ve already got your prescription then places like Lenscrafters, Vision
World, Pearle Vision, or even the optical section in places like Sears
or Walmart can fix you up with a serviceable pair that won’t cost you an
arm and a leg.  Just remember to carry your untinted pair with you for indoor or after-dark use.



roggie, February 3, 2012 at 7:39 am

you can buy clip ons that fit you glasses.or you can get the lense that darken in sun light


jwsknk, February 3, 2012 at 8:06 am

iceman said: BB: Have you heard of anyone having a good pair of Oakleys fitted with “readers?”  Having trouble reading my Garmin.  Old age.

they used to do that, these were that way in, e-gads, 1993?


imarunner2, February 3, 2012 at 8:54 am

I bought a pair of Rx sunglasses before my first RAGBRAI last year. I mostly trained using contacts with sunglasses. For the most part I’ve been extremely happy with the Rx sunglasses. I spent the extra money for bifocal lenses and wish I’d spent a little more for the photosensitive lenses. The biggest downside with the Rx lenses for me was in low light conditions like at dawn.


alontako Lontakos, February 3, 2012 at 9:16 am

Two years ago at the RAGBRAI expo I bought a pair of Sziols sunglasses system from a great gal named Susie.  They are great, you can interchange different colored lenses, you can add prescription lenses (mine have bifocals), and they have a 3 year guarantee.  They have different lenses for different sports, they have worked well for me.  Now I have sun protection and can read my cycle computer.  Google Sziols and go to their website.  


BillDana, February 3, 2012 at 9:17 am

My eye doctor set me up with 7-eye frames with a removable foam air damn….


They have a transition lens with the bottom set to read the speedometer and the top set for distance.  I can read everything on the speedo because the readers are set to focus at arms length.  I only use the foam insert on my motorcycle, not the bicycle.  The ear pieces are adjustable. They also work great in the car….  Not cheap, but worth the money.







Browner, February 3, 2012 at 10:07 am

I just went through this last summer.  I recommend a talk to your eye doctor about options.  Perscription sunglasses can be had but are expensive.  If your perscription is not too heavy, you can get perscription Rec Specs, Oakleys or Gargoyles, along with many other brands.

Try contacts and then the sunglass options are endless.  I have a heavy perscription and astigmatism to the point where I need Toric contacts.  They are the most expensive type of contact there is.  20 years ago when I checked into contacts, toric lenses where $300 a pair!  So I stuck with my glasses.  Last year when I talked to my eye doctor about needing something for a water park to be able to see, he recommended contacts.  They now make disposable daily wear Toric contacts that cost $1 each.  Still expensive at $2 a day, but when I only wear contacts a few times a year, I think it is worth it.  No more sweat running down my glasses, No lenses to clean, many options for sunglasses, etc.

Give it a try.  My eye doctor gave me a 5 pack sample for free to see if I would like them.  I love them!  I still wear my glasses most of the time.  After 40 years, glasses are part of my daily ritual.


pmac, February 3, 2012 at 10:19 am

Last year I switched from clipons to prescription transition lenses with no-line bifocals.  I have a high prescription so I had to look around for awhile to find some that worked since the local optical shop couldn’t get what I wanted and I did not want the inserts.  The transition lens work very well for me.  Two online options that specialize in prescription sunglasses are below.  I got mine from sportrx and have been pleased.  



“Bicycle Bill”, February 3, 2012 at 11:08 am

roggie said: you can buy clip ons that fit you glasses.or you can get the lense that darken in sun light

I tried using the ones that darken in sunlight (sold under several different trademarks such as Transitions or Photogray) but was dissatisfied in that they did not darken as much as I liked and took too long to go from dark to clear when coming indoors — although that was over twenty years ago; they may have improved the performance since then.

Another problem I had is that I once broke one of the lenses and had to get a replacement.  The replacement lens, for whatever reason, would always darken more than the remaining original lens.  So when I was finally able to take advantage of an offer by my local optician to get two pairs of glasses for the price of one (plus the cost of tinting the second pair), I jumped at it and got my first pair of Rx sunglasses.  I had a large selection of frame styles that way as well, from the Buddy Holly/Roy Orbison “Ray-Ban Wayfarer” look to the wire-rimmed aviator style and just about anything else in between.



SFC JKL 2, February 3, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Not sure if we’ve hit the original question very well or not.  About any manufacturermakes inserts for you to attach t osome of their glasses.  I used to have a set of Bolle’s but know have Tifosi’s.  Take the insert piece to you eye doctor and they will install the lenses into them.  Normally costs less the $200 and your insurance may cover it.  To get a fixed pair of prescription sunglasses is more expensive, but will open you up to more options (transitions, tinting, prescriptions, etc).

The vented lenses used for the cycling specific glasses are a vast improvement over a conventional pair of sunglasses.  Polycarbonite lenses are recomended to help protect your eyes in case of an accident.


Amanda, February 3, 2012 at 12:18 pm

I got mine from my local eye guy. They are Nike frames – think they will work great. Make that THOUGHT they’d work great. I seem to have lost them after wearing them one time and having them less than 1 week. GRRR there goes 300 bucks. :(


Tony, February 3, 2012 at 1:06 pm

Eye Surgeons Associates fitted me with frames from Liberty Sports. The frame name is Biker. It was the only frame at the time available that had wrap around style lens that a bifocal could be cut. I also wanted Transition lens. There are several types of Transition lens. Mine transition from clear to dark gray in seconds. I also got Crizal scratch resistant high impact. I have 3 pairs off these. In 2007 I tested a pair the hard way. Did an endo at 20mph. Head first into the pavement. Shattered the helmet. Face skidded across the pavement. The right lens looked like a grinder ran across it. The temples on the glasses have silicon pads on the ends. They hold the glass to your head and kept them from sliding off. Even when wet. The glasses never came off in the impact. You can get them with none prescription lens. Check with your eye doctor about these.

Liberty Sport Biker


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