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Reviews > Eye Protection and Binoculars > Sun Glasses > Guideline Eyewear Draft Sunglasses > Test Report by David Wilkes

Test series by David Wilkes

Guideline Draft Sunglasses 

Initial Report - Oct 29 2013
Long Term Report - Apr 14 2014

Tester Information

Name: David Wilkes
E-Mail: amatbrewer@yahoo.com
Age: 47
Location: Yakima Washington USA
Gender: M
Height: 5'11" (1.80 m)
Weight: 197 lb (89.40 kg)

Biography:

I started backpacking in 1995 when I moved to Washington State. Since then, I have backpacked in all seasons and conditions the Northwest has to offer.  I prefer trips on rugged trails with plenty of elevation gain. While I continuously strive to lighten my load, comfort and safety are most important to me. I have finally managed to get my basic cold weather pack weight, not including consumables, to under 30 lbs (14 kg).

Product Information

Manufacturer:

Guideline Direct

Year of Manufacture:

2013

Manufacturer’s Website:

http://www.glpolarized.com

MSRP:

US$ 59.95

Measured Weight:

Glasses 29 g (1 oz) 
Case 36 g (1.25 oz)

Size:

One size

Product image
Image courtesy of GuidelineDirect.com

Product Description:

From a company that makes fishing focused sunglasses the  Draft line is described as "equally at home on-the-water or on-the-trail." These semi-rimless sunglasses feature polarized Polycarbonate lenses, floating nose pads, and vents at the top of the frame. They are intended to fit medium to large faces and come in two styles; a "Brown Tortoise" frame with "Freestone Brown" lenses (what I received) and "Shiny Black " frames with "Deep Water Grey" lenses.

Initial Report

May 28 2013

Side viewSpecifications from the manufacturer:

Frame Color:

Shiny Brown Tortoise

Face Size:

Medium/ Large

Lens Color:

Freestone Brown

Frame Material:

Grilamid BTR

Lens Material:

Polycarbonate


Normally I am not a fan of tortoise shell frames. Not that I have anything against them, they are my wife’s favorite style of frame, I just don’t like them for myself. So it was kind of inevitable that having a 50/50 chance I would of course get the tortoise frames. Upon receiving them I found the frames so dark that at first glance I did not even know they were tortoise shell. I found I had to hold them up to a light to see the pattern. The frames are semi-translucent so the lighter areas of the frames will pass some light. As lenses go I normally prefer a very dark grey lens for bright light, and light amber for lower light conditions. These lenses are a dark brown and took a bit of getting used to. However after wearing them a few minutes I found I liked what they do to colors. Now it does not hurt any that fall is coming on, and the warm tint of the glasses seem to accentuate the fall colors. After wearing them for a day I like the color of the lenses even more.

Nose PadAs for fit, the glasses are intended for medium to large faces and I find I fall into the large face category so they should be good for me, and they seem to be. Putting them on the first time I noticed they seem to fit quite well and are very light. The floating nose pads are attached to a metal frame that is screwed to the glasses and can be adjusted. So far I have not worn them for more than an hour or so at a stretch and found the nose pads to be mostly comfortable. The ear pieces do not seem to be adjustable short of heating them like is done at my eye doctor’s office, but from what I have been able to tell so far they fit me just fine as is; snug enough to stay on securely but not too tight. Being as light weight as these glasses are 29 g (1 oz) I am looking forward to seeing if they remain comfortable for extended use.

The frames have 6 vent holes along the top of the frames to help prevent fogging of the lenses. These vents look rather small to me so I will be interested to see how effective they are. One thing I noticed when inspecting the glasses, unlike most glasses I have seen, the screws that hold the ear pieces screw in from the bottom instead of from the top. I can see how this makes the screws less visible, but I fear that if they ever loosen up they will probably fall out and be lost. This is something I will be watching for. Upon inspecting the lenses I found them to be very clear and virtually distortion free. Since they are polarized lenses I looked out at bright sunlight and turned the glasses 360 deg. I was surprised to see that the change in light level was not as drastic as I normally see with polarized lenses, but seeing as how noticeably they reduce glare I am not concerned.Price Tag

The glasses came with a case that is similar to others I have seen; simple neoprene-like material with some plastic in the front to hold its shape to match the glasses. Some of the stitching was a bit off and there were a few loose threads, but I rarely use the cases that come with my glasses so it is not really an issue.

Long Term Report

Apr 14 2014
Usage:
2 overnight (one night each) snowshoeing trips – Washington Cascades (5500’/1700 m)
12+ days of Nordic Skiing (Ski Patrol) – White Pass, Washington
1 day of Nordic Skiing (for fun) – White Pass, Washington
1 day hike – Bear Canyon, Eastern foothills, Washington Cascades
1 day hike – Cowiche Canyon, Yakima, Washington (with a side trip to a winery)
5 day family (holiday) trip to Cancun, Mexico

I have been wearing these glasses for about 4 months now. I think it is important to note that in addition to the above usage I have worn them virtually every day since receiving them. This ranges from the short drive (~10 min) to/from work to almost all day. I am sure there were a few days I have not worn them, but I can’t recall any.

Fit/comfort: I think a short story might illustrate this better than anything I could describe. While snow camping, I snowshoed up to a ridge and wandered around the trees on the top until I found a good camp spot. I got mostly through setting up my tarp and arraigning my camp, packing snow to make my temporary home a bit more comfortable and I was surprised that despite it still being early evening, it was surprisingly dark. So I figured I would need to hasten my preparations and dig out my headlight while I could still see. It was not until I attempted to scratch my nose that I realized the reason it was so dark was that I was still wearing my sunglasses. Yes, more than once I have completely forgotten I was wearing them. I am not sure I could want more when it comes to glasses. Not once have I had any issue with them rubbing or being too tight. This is especially notable since they do not fit loosely. That is, they do not slip, nor have they come off when moving my head quickly (or during the few times I have crashed while skiing).Use while on Ski Patrol

Lenses: Despite some hard use the lenses are still in good shape. I can be ruff on glasses, wiping them on whatever I have handy (shirt, paper napkin, back of my glove, etc.), and have dropped these a few times including on concrete and ice. And when not in use they tend to just be tossed on my desk, or a table at home, or on the passenger seat when I am driving.

I have found the tint to be a very good balance for a range of lighting. I have yet to want them darker, even in the brightest light (Cancun Mexico beach or Cascade snow) and while they are too dark for rain/fog they are still usable in lower light levels such as light overcast.

They are advertised as being resistant to fog. While I have gotten them to fog under extreme cases (e.g. pulling a heavy toboggan by my-self on the cross-country ski trails) I have to say they do not fog easily and when fogged they do clear quickly. These are as good if not slightly better than other fog resistant glasses I have worn.

Frame: As noted above these glasses fit me well and have been very comfortable even during extended wear. I have worn them in hot (Mexico) and cold (skiing in the Washington Cascades) temperatures, and in both dry and humid conditions. The frames have been comfortable and show no visible sign of wear or deterioration. And I have detected no signs of loosening of the hinges.

If I were pressed to suggest any change/improvement to these, the only thing I could think of would be replaceable lenses. Since I wear my glasses to help protect my contacts from drying and to reduce glare, I wear them even in low light conditions such as rain, overcast, and even twilight. So being able to replace the lenses with very light amber for those conditions would make these ideal for me. But as it is, I fully expect to continue wearing these as my primary glasses for the foreseeable future.

I will conclude by saying that I would recommend these glasses to friends and family, in fact I already have, and look forward to wearing them on all my outings and adventures this coming summer.


Likes:
  • Light weight
  • Comfortable
  • Clear distortion free lenses
  • Adjustable nose pads
Dislikes:
  • None

This concludes my report. I would like to thank the folks at Guideline Direct and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to test this product.

 



Read more reviews of Guideline Eyewear gear
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Reviews > Eye Protection and Binoculars > Sun Glasses > Guideline Eyewear Draft Sunglasses > Test Report by David Wilkes



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