Back in March I wrote up a post on my LASIK surgery and quest for the best eye protection for my post-surgery eyes. I spoke with Larum, who is one of our top eyewear specialists, and he pointed me in the direction of the Wiley X Air Rage Sunglasses with Photochromic Lenses. This was an excellent choice. I walk my dogs and run at night, and having the light adjusting lenses made it easy to keep the sun out of my eyes during the day but still see clearly at night. They’re very comfortable, especially with the gaskets, which are intended to keep wind, dust and other possible threats out of the eyes of motorcyclists, and the adjustable head straps keep them in place nicely.
But situations change. I no longer need eye protection every time I’m outside, so I don’t wear my Air Rages when walking my dogs or running at night (though I do still wear them during the day). At the end of the week I’ll be going on a trip to a family cabin, where I’ll be out on boats, jet skis, swimming and just enjoying the great outdoors in Minnesota. As I’ll be out on a boat, there’s bound to be a fair amount of glare getting in my eyes. I want to be able to see past that glare without it blinding me. While photochromic lenses are great for their versatility, they’re not the best for seeing past glare. The best lens for these occasions are polarized.
The great thing is that we sell the various Wiley X Air Rage Lenses separately in case you want to swap later. And very fortunate is that it’s a breeze to switch out the lenses!
So How do I Change my Wiley X Air Rage Lenses?
This will be easier explain in the video at the top of the page, but switching lenses is super easy. As there are a lot of cool features on the Air Rages, like the gaskets that keep dust and wind out of your eyes, the head strap that keeps them in place or the loose band for hanging them around your neck, I like to clear everything out of the way to make it easier to remove the lenses. This isn’t totally necessary, but it helps.
As you can see in the video, removing the head strap from the T-Peg docking system is incredibly easy, and popping out the gasket just takes a second. I pretty much always use this when wearing my Air Rages, as I run a fair bit and I like them snug to my face. I find wearing the Air Rages with the head strap and NOT the gasket to be uncomfortable. They’re designed to go together.
Now that you have all the extra stuff out of the way removing the lenses is a breeze. Just pull up on the top of the frame and push the lens out with your thumb. It doesn’t take much effort to push out the lenses when you pull up the frame. You could push them out without pulling up on the frame, but I think this puts undo stress on both the frame and the lenses. As these sunglasses are ANSI rated I don’t think you need to worry about breaking the lenses, but I think it’s still a good idea to keep from bending them too much.
Pop the lenses out the front like I do in the video, and place the new lenses in from the front. They pop in a lot easier than they pop out, and you’ll hear a click to know their in place. Give them a good wipe with the included microfiber cloth (included with the sunglasses, not the lenses) and you should be good to go!
One thing to note, especially if you’re getting a lot of sweat on your sunglasses, is that the salt from sweat can make it difficult to just wipe off the lenses, and even running them under water when they’re in the frame might not totally remove spots. I struggled to get my photochromic lenses perfectly clean until I took them out of the sunglasses and cleaned them separately. You don’t want to scrub them, as this could remove lens coatings and possibly diminish the quality of your lenses, but if you gently wash them outside of the frames the lenses clean up really nicely. Just make sure you hands are nice and clean when you press them back into the frame (if your hands are oily or greasy you’ll get harder to remove thumb prints) and you’ll only need to do a quick once-over to make them shine.
I replaced the gaskets and head strap so I’ll be ready for all sorts of water-based fun next week! I can’t wait to get out there with my Wiley X Air Rages, now with polarized lenses!