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Riding off into the sunset

By Michael Mihalevich

Bora SPF100 Sunglasses

7EYE by Panoptx


As our hero rides down the dusty road and off into the sunset, it’s a good thing he’s wearing his 7EYE Bora SPF100 Sunglasses with Orbital Seal removable eyecups and the 24/7 NXT light-sensitive lenses; because otherwise, he would have to stop along the side of the road, put drops into his burning, dry eyes and change glasses, or at least change lenses, before continuing his ride into the night.

Hokey? Sure, but what the heck, you’ve got the best pair of motorcycle riding glasses you’ve ever owned, so now you can spend more time motoring on down the highway. Or, you can pull a U-turn back into that rainstorm behind you and see more clearly wear-ing your 7EYE glasses because their lenses tend to boost the clarity of the seven colors of the visible light spectrum, even under overcast conditions.

The boldness and differentiation of colors in bright sunlight, due to their amplified color technology (ACT), was one of the first features of my new 7EYE Boras that took me by surprise. I had to stop, pull the glasses down, look at the scenery, put the glasses back into place, and look at the scenery again. And then I suggested to my wife (who was my passenger) that she take a look through the Boras, but only briefly, because I wanted them back. A few days later, under rainy overcast conditions, the bolstered contrast of colors with the Boras was significantly better than without them.

The new contrast lenses darken to a rich brown in bright sun, and lighten to yellow in low light. Nighttime is less ideal since the lenses cut out about 20 percent of the available light, and seem to soften the contrast. However, if you don’t have alternate eye protection, you should use your Boras at night as well.

So what the heck is NXT? According to 7EYE, NXT was “initially created to serve as windshield material in U.S. military aircraft. NXT is the most advanced photochromic sun lens material ever made, creating lenses with a broad transmission range, rapid activation and exceptional durability. NXT is so strong, lenses made from it are guaranteed for life against breakage.” That pretty well sums it up. Virtually unbreakable and guaranteed for life is a good thing when it comes to eye protection.

OK, what about this SPF? It’s Seal Protection Factor. 7EYE’s SPF-rated eyewear provides more protection than standard sunglasses. The SPF is managed by 7EYE’s patented Orbital Seal Eyecup to keep your eyes hydrated. They have filtered vents built into a multimaterial eyecup that locks out wind, glare, and irritants that might interfere with your vision. The eyecups follow the contours of your face. However, depending upon the direction of the wind hitting you, or if your nose is slightly crooked, you may notice an occasional draft through the seal. It is amazing that despite all of the possible varied shapes and sizes of faces, these 7EYE Boras fit so well. And by simply removing the eyecup, the SPF100 models are easily converted to regular sunglasses.

I’ve really enjoyed the versatility of my 7EYE Boras with the photo-chromic lenses, and I stuck with the traditional glossy black frame. Natu-rally, with the removable orbital seal in place, it infringes slightly with your peripheral vision, so you have to turn your head a bit more, but that is expected. The lenses offer outstand-ing clarity and no distortion. They are made with an eight-base curve as opposed to the normal four-base curve, which means you get fuller wrap protection around your eyes. 7EYE has incorporated a rubber insert about an inch long at the back end of the temples to better keep the glasses in place as you’re speeding down the highway with the wind in your face.

One of the things that you need to be aware of regarding the photo-chromic lenses is that they need direct UV rays to darken efficiently. If you happen to be wearing a full-face helmet with a UV face shield, your photochromic lenses will not darken to their full potential. The same thing happens if you use them while driving in a car since the windshield is blocking the UV rays. Until someone comes up with a lens that adjusts itself according to the size of your eyes’ pupils, the photochromics are your best choice for adapting to changing light conditions.

The Bora is available in glossy black, charcoal, and dark tortoise, fits face sizes L-XL, and is RX-ready. The price ranges between $125–$250 depending on the type of lens tint—some of which offer anti-fog coating—and other options. 7EYE eye- wear is available through the company’s website, many Harley-Davidson dealers, and specialty optical shops.

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