We all want to be aviators
Here at The Obsessive we do love our military kit. The demands on a piece of military kit require it to be of the very highest standard, and only the best kit survives. Randolph Engineering is one of those US companies that believes in making the best product it can, and making it in the USA. They’ve been supplying the US military with these Aviator Sunglasses since 1982, which means that they’re proven in the theatre of war.
Each pair of glasses goes through more than two hundred production stages: mostly by hand. They even make their own solder flux, to ensure the frames have unequaled strength and solder joint integrity. The nose pads are made from a super soft silicone that means the glasses stay in place on your nose even during extreme perspiration. The bayonet arms, which allow the aviator to remove the glasses without removing their helmet, are one of the distinguishing characteristics of these remarkable sunglasses.
This isn’t lost on motorcyclists, who immediately recognise this simple but essential feature with the purchase justification, “Oh, they’d be perfect for the bike.”
Country of Origin : USA
Brand/Make/Model: Randolph Engineering
Designer: Jan Waszkiewicz & Stanley Zaleski
Type: Aviators HGU-4/P Sunglasses
Year: 1978 (Subcontracted supplier to US Military) 1982 to date (US Military Supplier)
Why: Quality utilitarian elegance and simplicity, with proven durability.