Polarized Caravan for less than an arm and/or leg
March 30, 2009 11:07 AM   Subscribe

I really love the Ray-Ban Caravan (RB3136). I really wish it had polarized lenses. Can you help me find a similar style?

Yes, there is one option available from Ray-Ban. It's a limited edition model of the Caravan with some crazy new lens polarization tech. Only 1K were made, and it's $500. Considering normal Caravans can be had for $80 online, that's a bit steep! So I'd really like to find something with a similar design that has polarized lenses.

I sail, and glare is killer without polarized lenses, lest you ask why I'm so attached.
posted by bobot to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (11 answers total)
Response by poster: A link would have been helpful: Amazon.com (or you can use Ray-Ban's site, which is all flash and impossible to use in a direct link)
posted by bobot at 11:13 AM on March 30, 2009

This is theoretical, so apologies, but I know that Ray Ban sells frames for prescription lenses, and optometrists may offer polarization as a lens option. I wonder if you could get a pair made with no prescription but polarized lenses for less (my wife got a pair of prescription Ray Ban sunglasses for around $200, which would at least split the difference in your favor). If all else fails. Personally I'd say that design has been imitated to death and I'd start browsing the selection at sunglass huts and such but I've been told I'm not very fashion conscious.
posted by nanojath at 11:18 AM on March 30, 2009

Response by poster: nanojath: I agree that aviators are oft-imitated, but the particular "squarishness" of these particular glasses has been eluding me in other styles. That's what is making this is so hard, and worthy of Ask MeFi!
posted by bobot at 11:36 AM on March 30, 2009

Too bad Modista doesn't have that particular model of Ray Ban in its db. Still might be worth looking around through.
posted by aubilenon at 11:40 AM on March 30, 2009

Best answer: American Optical have these which seem to be the original of the style RayBan are copying.
I have had a pair of their glass lensed General's for two years now and can recommend them. Better build quality than RayBan's IMO. Being glass they are less prone to scratching but can be a little heavy. You can specify which arms/temples you desire, you're not obliged to have them like the photo and they have a polarized option.
posted by Dr.Pill at 12:18 PM on March 30, 2009

The Rudy Project Sky Major looks pretty similar.

It's not cheap, but it is polarized.

Slightly cheaper, and also polarized are the Hobie Miramar, and Marshall.

The Marshall looks very similar to the Ray Ban frame.
posted by zen_spider at 12:42 PM on March 30, 2009

Those look very similar to the slightly more rounded Ray-Ban Cockpit (RB3362) polarized glasses I (over)paid about $200 for at Sunglass Hut — they seem to be available through Amazon for less.
posted by nicwolff at 12:58 PM on March 30, 2009

Best answer: IANAO (I am not an optician), but my best friend is one and they put in non-prescription sun polarized lenses often (for a lot less than $500 depending on which options you go with). I would go do some pricing at your optometrist of choice and see if you can get something in your price range.
posted by Kimberly at 1:18 PM on March 30, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks folks- ended up buying the "Original Pilot" with polycarb polarized lenses from AO. I'll keep the Cockpit in mind as a backup if those don't work out
posted by bobot at 3:12 PM on March 30, 2009

I've had a couple of pairs of the American Optical Original Pilots as well, and they were not nearly as well-made as the Ray-Bans.
posted by nicwolff at 9:18 PM on March 30, 2009

Response by poster: Update after a few weeks of wearing:

The AO Pilots are OK, but the polarization is pretty shoddy and barely effective (does not cut glare off water as effectively as other polarized sunglasses I've had). I'm pretty disappointed, but they weren't that expensive so I don't feel too bad. If you don't care about glare they'd be fine, but that's the main reason I wanted polarized glasses.
posted by bobot at 11:12 AM on May 12, 2009

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