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Vision issues
drewgimpy
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Utah, United States
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 02:15 AM UTC
It has been 8 years since I last built a model. It appears there has been a huge change in my vision in that time. I was 40 at the time and I am turning 48 next month. My issue is I can't see a thing up close with my glasses on. So I am looking for advice on how others who may have this issue deal with it. Do I need to break down and get bifocals? Do I get some reading glasses and switch back and forth? Thanks for your help.
matt
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 02:37 AM UTC
I have a swing arm magnifier, as well as the following:

https://www.harborfreight.com/magnifier-head-strap-with-lights-38896.html

and a set of these:

https://www.harborfreight.com/165x-jewelers-clip-on-eye-loupe-94364.html
Kevlar06
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Washington, United States
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 04:25 AM UTC
Before going out and spending money on new glasses, let's ask a few questions--

1) You say you already wear glasses, and think you might need bifocals. Ok, why do you wear glasses now? Are you near sighted? How's your close-close in vision? Do you need your glasses to read? These questions are important questions to ask before seeing the Optometrist.

2) if you can see close up without your glasses, perhaps all you need is an optical magnifier like an Optivisor, or as suggested a flexible magnifier.

3) You may not have a problem with your glasses at all, but you might have a problem with lighting. I've found by increasing the Kelvins on my workbench, I can see much more clearly. You might investigate a better light source to work under-- sometimes that's all you need.

I've been wearing Trifocals for about 10 years now (I'll be 66 this year). I wore bifocals for about 10 years (I'm nearsighted) before that. But I don't wear glasses at all to do modeling work. I use a combination of a 5000k Ott light and a 6500K desk lamp bulb. This gives me plenty of light. Occasionally, I'll need to see extremely close up, so I use an Optivisor-- but very occasionally. Lighting is key-- when you look for light bulbs or high intensity lights-- look for natural light bulbs rated at 5000k or above. Don't go by the lumens or watts, as this is not a good measure of reliable lighting for workbenches (the Kelvin Scale on most light bulbs and high intensity lights can be found on the side of the box).

Hopefully this may help. I've found trying to build Models with bifocals or trifocals is actually difficult because you have to keep changing the focal point by moving your head or eyes up and down-- it would be better to buy a pair of cheap readers unless you need bifocals for other reasons.
VR, Russ
Trisaw
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California, United States
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 04:41 AM UTC


Besides glasses and optics, go for white LED lighting---white light lamps are cheaper now and you might want to buy more than one lamp to brighten up your workbench. Buy those "Daytime Reading Light" study LED desk lamps. Don't use those yellow incandescent screw-in bulbs anymore. The white light is a godsend for modeling effectively.

Another option is to buy small 000, 00, and 0 brush sets. They sell them online and they're not that expensive compared to individual brushes found at the craft and art stores. Even if you eyesight is bad, you will have a very thin pointed brush to at least stab that area with paint if you can see it. (The right tool for the job).
RobinNilsson
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 04:54 AM UTC



Those lights on the head-strap magnifiers(or nerd viewers as my kids call them) are useless. The can be taken off to change batteries so remove the batteries and discard the lamps.
The little circular magnifier will drop off after a while but that is not a big deal, it wasn't that useful anyway.
The rest is very useful though. It has two magnifications, there is a fold-down/fold-up lens on the inside.
The hinges for this fails after a while so I suggest getting two from the start and fix the fold-up lens in the down position on one of these contraptions and remove it completely from the other. Save it, it could come in handy later.
I use ordinary readers glasses to replace that little circular magnifier. With two or three different magnifications on those reading glasses I get more versatility.
Since the whole front can be flipped up you can use the reading glasses to check the instruction sheet and then flip down the front to view the parts.

Another trick I learned from another modeler is that you can wear two reading glasses at the same time.
This gives you the same magnification for both eyes if you find it tedious to look through those jewellers loupes.
/ Robin
Kevlar06
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 06:47 AM UTC
I agree with Robin in regards to "lighted" head strap magnifiers-- the lights don't produce enough light to be of very much assistance. However, I have a 5000K headlamp (in addition to my 6500K desk lamp and 5000K Ott lamp) which I occasionally use for "peering" into hard to see/reach areas such as the corners of structural boxes (I do a lot of work in brass sheet, using a resistance soldering unit). It works equally well in corners of plastic models that are hard to see due to shadows. It was a camping light I bought at Costco about three years ago. The only problem is, the battery will run down in about an hour. There is a new ( and pricey--over $80) set of glasses at Micro-Mark called "Eyejusters" which is an adjustable lense from +.50--+4.00 diopter, which I think means it's adjustable from 2X-4X, but I'm not quite sure. For me though, I work better with my glasses of ( including reading) so I haven't tried these yet ( would like to though).
VR, Russ
Grauwolf
#084
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 07:05 AM UTC

Quoted Text

My issue is I can't see a thing up close with my glasses on



Sounds like your far sighted.

A pair of reading glasses will help with close up work.

Cheers,
RobinNilsson
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 07:24 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I agree with Robin in regards to "lighted" head strap magnifiers-- the lights don't produce enough light to be of very much assistance. However, I have a 5000K headlamp (in addition to my 6500K desk lamp and 5000K Ott lamp) which I occasionally use for "peering" into hard to see/reach areas such as the corners of structural boxes (I do a lot of work in brass sheet, using a resistance soldering unit). It works equally well in corners of plastic models that are hard to see due to shadows. It was a camping light I bought at Costco about three years ago. The only problem is, the battery will run down in about an hour. There is a new ( and pricey--over $80) set of glasses at Micro-Mark called "Eyejusters" which is an adjustable lense from +.50--+4.00 diopter, which I think means it's adjustable from 2X-4X, but I'm not quite sure. For me though, I work better with my glasses of ( including reading) so I haven't tried these yet ( would like to though).
VR, Russ



Have you ever considered getting a head lamp with LEDs instead? The battery lasts longer ...
Alternatively get a small power supply/adaptor that plugs into a wall socket and use that instead of batteries.
I presume you don't run around when working with that head lamp so the cable shouldn't be a restriction.

About those useless lamps: I tried for half an hour to get both lamps focused in the same spot and then I thought "bugger this" and removed them ...
/ Robin
Kevlar06
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 03:39 PM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

I agree with Robin in regards to "lighted" head strap magnifiers-- the lights don't produce enough light to be of very much assistance. However, I have a 5000K headlamp (in addition to my 6500K desk lamp and 5000K Ott lamp) which I occasionally use for "peering" into hard to see/reach areas such as the corners of structural boxes (I do a lot of work in brass sheet, using a resistance soldering unit). It works equally well in corners of plastic models that are hard to see due to shadows. It was a camping light I bought at Costco about three years ago. The only problem is, the battery will run down in about an hour. There is a new ( and pricey--over $80) set of glasses at Micro-Mark called "Eyejusters" which is an adjustable lense from +.50--+4.00 diopter, which I think means it's adjustable from 2X-4X, but I'm not quite sure. For me though, I work better with my glasses of ( including reading) so I haven't tried these yet ( would like to though).
VR, Russ



Have you ever considered getting a head lamp with LEDs instead? The battery lasts longer ...
Alternatively get a small power supply/adaptor that plugs into a wall socket and use that instead of batteries.
I presume you don't run around when working with that head lamp so the cable shouldn't be a restriction.

About those useless lamps: I tried for half an hour to get both lamps focused in the same spot and then I thought "bugger this" and removed them ...
/ Robin




We are slightly off topic, but in fact, my 5000k headlamp is an LED lamp. It uses three AAA batteries. And will last for an hour at the 5000k level, which is really about all I need it for, after that it steadily fades. I timed it once, and it took a full 8+ hours to fully run down the battery, at it's highest 5000k setting (it has settings for 3000k and 1500k, to extend battery life, but I find anything less than 5000k unsuitable for model work-- just a personal preference. Useable light for modeling purposes (really bright in other words) is gone in about 1-3 hours depending on the brand of battery I choose. I've never thought of an adapter, but I suppose it would work. I have a 6500K LED industrial desk lamp mounted on the end of my workbench which provides excellent light, but I recently supplemented it with an Ott free standing, flexible neck, high intensity lamp at 5000k which I use for a "hands free" spotlight that casts about an 18" circle of very bright light. Same as my headlamp, but it's more stationary. This lamp gives me all the light I need for delicate work, and the flex neck means I can position the base away from the model and adjust the light perfectly-- it's also got a plug and AC transformer ( and a nice feature at the base--which is an IPhone charging jack, which means I can plug in my IPhone for research work or music (or even watch a movie while I work-- couple that with headphones and my resistance soldering unit wires, and I'm an electrician's nightmare!). My optometrist told me for close up detail work and reading, it's the light, and not the focal length that really make a difference to many people. As for those head strap magnifiers, they usually use a low wattage incandescent bulb ( the Optiviser uses a six LED system though). But I've found them to be totally ineffective because they are warm lights rated at about 600k, which is rather dim, about the quality of the overhead light in your car. To dim for model making.
VR, Russ
drewgimpy
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 05:45 PM UTC
Thanks for the help. I have a harbor freight close by, I will go look at some of those options.
Kevlar06
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 06:42 PM UTC
I'd stay away from Harbor Freight-- you'd get a better deal at Hobby Lobby with a 40% off coupon with higher quality Ott lamp-- if that's your issue. Where in Utah are you located? I have family in the Provo area.
VR, Russ
Scarred
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Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 07:18 PM UTC
I am VERY nearsighted and I've been wearing glasses since the early 70's. I occasionally had bifocals and back in those days till the late 90's the styles of frames were large lenses with big fields of vision so bifocal lenses didn't interfere that much with my field of view. I'm "blind as a bat" and with out my glasses everything 6 inches past my nose is blurry. When reading, working or sticking bits of plastic together my glasses are off and my nose is literally in my work. I occasionally had bifocals throughout the years but when frame styles went to smaller lenses I quit getting them because the distortion caused by the bottom lens was too great. I get all my vision needs taken care of by the VA and I get free glasses every 12 to 24 months. Last November at my annual eye check up I asked my doctor for a pair of reading glasses and since my distance vision prescription hasn't changed in 40 years she agreed and the last week of 2018 I got my new reading glasses.

What a effing difference! I no longer get a crick in my neck from bending over my work, I can read things at arms length and I don't get nose prints on my tablet screen anymore. Yes that really happens to me. I still have my magnifying light and visors but haven't needed them since I got these new reading glasses.

Swapping between my reading and distance frames isn't an issue because when I build I took off my distance frames or pushed them up onto the top of my head anyway.
matt
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Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 01:00 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I'd stay away from Harbor Freight-- you'd get a better deal at Hobby Lobby with a 40% off coupon with higher quality Ott lamp-- if that's your issue. Where in Utah are you located? I have family in the Provo area.
VR, Russ



Yes some of their stuff has issues.... but both the options I have are decent for the $$
165thspc
#0
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Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 01:50 AM UTC
All good advice the above.

However if it has been 8 years since you had you vision checked then you need to go back and have it checked again.

I was always near sighted so I simply took my glasses off to work on my models.

There is another option: decide what your preferred optium distance is for working on models might be - your vision specialist can easily (and not too expensively) make a single vision pair of glasses designed to correct your prescription at that distance.

The above has the distinct advantage of also then correcting for your angle of astigmatism which is the factor that may have actually changed down through the years and not your magnification or focus.
Scarred
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Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 05:44 AM UTC

Quoted Text

All good advice the above.

However if it has been 8 years since you had you vision checked then you need to go back and have it checked again.

I was always near sighted so I simply took my glasses off to work on my models.

There is another option: decide what your preferred optium distance is for working on models might be - your vision specialist can easily (and not too expensively) make a single vision pair of glasses designed to correct your prescription at that distance.

The above has the distinct advantage of also then correcting for your angle of astigmatism which is the factor that may have actually changed down through the years and not your magnification or focus.



Gotta agree, get your eyes checked! After 40 you can have some changes you may not be aware of and unconsciously forcing yourself to squint and strain your eyes causing headaches fatigue and eyestrain. You may need reading glasses now but you'll never know until you have a checkup. Plus you should get the health of you eyes checked every couple of years as you get older.
Removed by original poster on 01/17/19 - 04:40:20 (GMT).
Removed by original poster on 01/17/19 - 04:41:05 (GMT).
drewgimpy
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Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 04:41 PM UTC

Quoted Text

I'd stay away from Harbor Freight-- you'd get a better deal at Hobby Lobby with a 40% off coupon with higher quality Ott lamp-- if that's your issue. Where in Utah are you located? I have family in the Provo area.
VR, Russ



I am in Taylorsville, only about a half hour from Provo. I see you are from Washington. I grew up there, in Yakima.
Scarred
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Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 05:54 PM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

I'd stay away from Harbor Freight-- you'd get a better deal at Hobby Lobby with a 40% off coupon with higher quality Ott lamp-- if that's your issue. Where in Utah are you located? I have family in the Provo area.
VR, Russ



I am in Taylorsville, only about a half hour from Provo. I see you are from Washington. I grew up there, in Yakima.



I lived in Orem on 760 E. until I was done with 6th grade. Went to school at Hillcrest across the highway from University Mall. Learned to ski at Sundance, swim at BYU, fishing in Utah Lake and in the streams up in the mountains. There was a drive-in a few blocks from the house called the Hi-Spot, road our bikes there and got a fresh lime and a burrito. Watched Geneva Steel glow at night.
GazzaS
#424
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Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 09:42 PM UTC
Here is my inexpensive suggestion. Go to your pharmacy and try the various reading glasses they have there.

There are plenty of things with small type to try to read there. For under 20 bucks you can be back at your bench!

Once you have reading glasses you can see up close with, improve your lighting with a desk lamp and high powered, cool white bulb.

Don't waste your money on a clunky optivisor. They are heavy, expensive and no more powerful than 3X reading glasses. The most powerful reading glasses you can buy off the rack are 3.5X.

Unlike a desk magnifier, reading glasses give you stereo vision. It is easier to judge distance.

Good luck!

Gaz
Kevlar06
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Posted: Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 06:19 AM UTC
Patrick and Andrew,
I grew up in Washington state, but have many attachments to Utah (Armorama contributor Russ Amott is also from Utah by the way--up near Bountiful I think). My daughter lives in Highland now, just moving up from Provo last summer. I was stationed at Dugway Proving Ground for three years doing research projects for the Navy and Marine Corps, and testing all kinds of protective gear, including M1 tank decontamination systems (I started my career as an Armor Officer in the 70s). There's a Hobby Shop in Provo (the Hobby Stop) I try and frequent when I'm down there. My favorite mail order Hobby shop before they closed was Great Models in Salt Lake, which had previously been Douglas Models-- one of the oldest shops in the country (which has now become Sprue Brothers, but moved out of state, I think Loic who owned Great Models has opened Kitlinx in Salt Lake now). As I get older, my trips to Utah have become less frequent. Too much snow in the winter and too hot in the summer--106F last summer when I was there!!!) Back on the subject at hand-- I think a combination of bright light (5000K or above) and perhaps some readers will solve your problem. Check out the Ott lamps at Hobby Lobby. Being nearsighted myself, I tried on some +3.00 diopter readers at Home Depot yesterday, just for fun, but found I'd have to stick the work right in my nose-- about 8 inches to use them, and they were no better than my close in vision already is. But it's also good advice to see an optometrist if you haven't seen one in a while.
VR, Russ
justsendit
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Posted: Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 06:30 AM UTC
One of the benefits of an Optivisor type of magnifier is that you get shielding (visor) from bright work-table lights entering your retinas while doing close work. And I donít find mine heavy at all.💡

Cheers!🍺
ómike
Scarred
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Posted: Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 10:55 AM UTC
My new readers are making a major difference. I'm not hunched over, my neck and shoulders aren't screaming bloody murder after a couple of hours and my face is no longer in my work. I am no longer in fear of super gluing a Q-tip to my ear. Again.