What's Cool In Road Cycling

Cool Gear: Adidas Evil Eye Glasses

I’m not sure that I’ve ever had a better set of glasses (in fact I am sure that I have not) than the Shields I got to test from Adidas But for those of you that like glasses with more “stuff”, these might fit the bill pretty well.

I like all manner of bits and pieces for cycling. The fact that I have spent money on every stinking doodad for a bike is probably why I get to do product reviews on a regular basis. That said, I really like the minimum amount of “stuff” when it comes to glasses, so it was with a little remorse that I laid to rest the Shields (Click here for that test) and picked up the Adidas Evil Eye’s. But I know there are lots of folks that like all the features you can get in glasses and these have a ton of them, so on they went…

What Are They Made Of?
The glasses themselves are a wrap around type fit with a frame that is substantial, but very light and is made from SPX (Adidas call it “break proof”, we call it plastic). The frame is designed with ventilation slots, top and bottom which also has the benefit of keeping the lenses away from your eyes a little further. I am not sure if that’s incidental or by design, but I like the less cramped feeling (especially with a prescription insert). Although the frame has some mass to it, it remains light and flexible.

The temple pieces are adjustable for height…

And the nose bridge (made of soft grippy stuff) is adjustable for width by a “double snap” system that does what it says it does, clicking narrow or wide as required.

There is also a snap-in (or snap out) sweat sponge that actually works, and while it is still chilly here in Phoenix, it helps reduce the wind flow a bit over the top of the glasses. Since it snaps out, it stays functional in the summer as we heat up here (I actually had these at the end of last summer and the ventilation worked fine).

Doin What They Do
First and foremost, I have slightly-off distance vision. Because I find myself at the front now and again, I always make sure to have a prescription insert in so that I don’t tow everyone through glass and over rough stuff (much…). So one of the first things I look for is a good insert system and the Evil Eye’s have a good insert system (although anything suffers compared to their performance system on the Shields). That said, I do see well enough to ride without prescription, and these are light and even better ventilated when the insert is removed.

A CE certified, and pretty slight, clear frame holds the lenses in place, and the sit deep in the recess created by the vents.

The adjustments on these glasses are very easy. The nose piece is soft and flexible enough for all but long term hockey and boxing veteran’s noses, but even they will find a fit due to the double snap system on the nose piece that allows you to vary width beyond just the large flexibility of the rubbery stuff that grips your nose. The arms simply click up and down for side adjustment, like the picture above shows…

The Shape of the glasses makes for a clear view and, while not as open as the shields, it is certainly as open a field as other glasses of this type. The lenses (which come in a host of colors and characteristics (like clear, low light, trail, bright etc…) snap in and out fairly easy, but, like everyone’s glasses, not easy enough so that you don’t feel like you are going to break something (no problem though as the SPX material is supposed to be break proof..).

The frames come in a standard type, and also in a head band type for more demanding things than Road cycling. They also come in a host of modern colors that let you go from conservative to just shy of lighting your head on fire.

I tried these with the foam sponge and without it and liked the added wind sheltering I got with it (and liked that it catches and evaporates sweat very well). I also liked the slightly increased ventilation without it off. These fit my melon pretty well and fit the large head of a riding buddy and I got no complaints from our Italian Desk when I sent the multi sport pair to Duncan. He liked the strap that come added to the multi-sport glasses along with the standard temple sticks that are already on each pair and the swap from standard to strap takes about two seconds.

Do Not Try This At Home
We also had a bit of an accident, as I loaded a pair with clear lenses into the carrying case and tossed them in a tool bag going motorcycle riding. I then had a buddy toss a tool chest in on top of the bags and… Crunch. This forced me to stop calling the SPX material “plastic”, as the glasses case got crushed, my genuine plastic mini tool box shattered and the glasses were fine (arms had come off, but snapped right back in to place…). In fact, I think the glasses protected the floor of the van from damage… I guess there is something to Austrian quality control standards and material selections and very little to be said for my butt-munch moto buddy).

You can hit Adidas at www.ADIDAS.com And can get most of the stuff from on line retailers.

It’s a shame I haven’t seen these glasses in many shops… A retailer could do worse than these and there isn’t nearly the competition that you get with other glasses that seem to be on everyone’s head and on every retail shelf… If you want the lightest cleanest pair of specs around the Shields will do. The prescription inserts for the shields are disgustingly light and have great clarity and quality. The Evileye line up is tough enough and has lots of “stuff” going on that make them great for road, mountain biking, or, as I found, very usable inside Motorcycle helmets as a durable multiple lens system. They also perform well with the strap set up and with out in lots of sports other than cycling.

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