I am on a mission in flying for my head to be as comfortable as possible. I’m currently going through the process of experimenting with different ANR headsets to see which ones squeeze my head the least (which I’ll be writing a future article about). In the meantime, I decided to focus on sunglasses.
I wear glasses (can’t do contacts anymore since they irritate my eyes), so anytime I have a headset on, I have frames running underneath my ear cups. I had a pair of prescription sunglasses for years that were okay, but still caused soreness above my ears after more than 3 hours of flying. I routinely fly 4-5 hours a day in training folks, so I had to find a better solution.
I saw an ad in Flying Magazine one month for Flying Eyes sunglasses. It was a relatively new company with a cool concept. A pilot started the company with the goal to create as thin a pair of sunglasses frames as possible to increase the comfort and decrease the ANR loss when wearing sunglasses. What the company came up with is pretty cool.
The ultra-thin frames on the all the different Flying Eyes models are made out of Resilamide. The material is so strong that the frames can be bent back and forth while not breaking. The company even brags that the frames are virtually unbreakable. I had to try these out.
I ordered a pair of the Golden Eagle Sport sunglasses. The process of getting prescription lenses in them was no big deal and took about a week. The eyeglasses shop initially thought the shape of the lens could be an issue, but it proved no problem at all. The lens manufacturer even managed to chip the frames, but Flying Eyes sent a new set of frames for free, even though it was not at all their fault.
In about a month and a half of flying with them, they are very comfortable. Some squeeze on the side of my head after extended periods of wear underneath a headset, but I’m exploring headset options currently (see above). Much improved over my last set of sunglasses.
Flying Eyes offers several different frame models, some of which are prescription compatible and some which aren’t. The Golden Eagle Sport frames run about $180. Orders can be placed on the Flying Eyes website.