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Vintage Ray Ban Expert

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by musehead, May 12, 2013.

  1. Chuckie Egg

    Chuckie Egg Senior member

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    Thanks Tom. All these years and I never knew so it's good to know. [​IMG] Oh well, back inside the drawer they go!
     
  2. tomr7574

    tomr7574 Member

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    no problemo, Chuckieee
     
  3. Chuckie Egg

    Chuckie Egg Senior member

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    Quote: Whoops... correction - i just had a closer look and there is actually engraved inscriptions on the bar, top and bottom.

    B&L RAY-BAN U.S.A
    B&L RAY-BAN 58 [] 14

    Never noticed before! [​IMG] In my defense, very difficult to see unless looking for it.
     
  4. musehead

    musehead Active Member

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    @chuckie egg yup those are g-15's in a black aviator frame. You can sell them on ebay for about 200-250 since they're basically new. They came in a 58mm or 62mm frame. 58's are the more desirable ones (that's what you have), 62's are a bit big imo.
     
  5. musehead

    musehead Active Member

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    @saturdays I'm 99% sure they never made them from real tortoise shells.
     
  6. Chuckie Egg

    Chuckie Egg Senior member

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    Thanks musehead :) I don't think I'd sell them though due to their sentimental value to me, I'm just surprised anyone could want them!
     
  7. attesom

    attesom New Member

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    Aug 6, 2013
    Location:
    Italy - Milan area
    Dear musehead, Sun(glasses) divinity, I see you can give oracles on vintage Ray-Bans, so here I am with a pair got inherited from an old friend. Basing on what I found online they are supposed to be outdoorsman double gradient mirror, I think they are a small size (56) or medium, not large anyway; some signs of use and age (and dirt too, been in a closet for a long time), plating is a bit worn; the markings I see on the frame are "B&L RAY-BAN USA" and "B&L 1/10 12K" plus BL on the lenses and on the parts that go on the nose. What's particular is that I see the BL on both lenses turned horizontally (the B letter on the outer side).

    See below a gallery of pictures for better evaluation, can you please help me in identifying them, and telling what can be the age and worth in case I decide to sell them? They are quite small for my face and in addition to this I'm using only Persol sunglasses with prescription lenses, nowadays.

    Thank you

    an image:
    [​IMG]




    link to the gallery of all of the pics:

    http://postimg.org/gallery/7ok3ia5k/
     
  8. musehead

    musehead Active Member

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    Vintage Ray Bans are a hot commodity, you'd be surprised.
     
  9. musehead

    musehead Active Member

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    @attesom very flattering but I'm just knowledgeable and know what to search for, just like those American Pickers guys. Anyways I digress those are unfortunately one of the most counterfit pair of vintage Ray Ban out there. The B&L laser etching is a bit disconcerning it seems to be in the wrong orientation meaning it seems to be upside down it could just be the picture. If those are real which the frame seems to be I'm not sure about the lens they can realistically fetch up to 100-150 in that condition.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
  10. TrueBritishGent

    TrueBritishGent Member

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    This thread is very interesting to someone who has always loved the look of Aviators , but knows nothing about them - I didn't even know that they weren't produced by the original company any more.
    I've got two pairs myself at the moment, one in gunmetal gray with greenish lenses, which I am sure are authentic and modern (came from a reputable supplier, paid a sensible price etc about 4 years ago.
    The other pair, I'm not so sure about. I inherited them from my cousin a couple of years ago but I have no idea how long he's had them - he's in his 40s. They don't match with others you've described here - they are silver frames with green lenses, and although they have B&L Ray Ban USA imprinted on the top of the bridge they have RB etched onto both lenses (not B&L as you stated).They also have B&L Ray Ban 60 16 125 (with a little square symbol between the 16 and 25).
    I can't see any other markings - unlike my new model ones which have Ray Ban Aviator Large , Made in Italy, etc, etched on various parts of the frame.
    I assume these ones are vintage? Rather pleased if they are as I tend to be a fan of vintage in general. Funnily enough I hardly ever wear them on account of them having sentimental value, unlike the later (almost identical) ones I also own.
     
  11. Chuckie Egg

    Chuckie Egg Senior member

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    I never knew either that B&L no longer made them & find the info all quite fascinating to read too :) Obviously I'll leave our resident expert to give his verdict but could your lenses be modern non-B&L replacement, hence the discrepancy?
     
  12. TrueBritishGent

    TrueBritishGent Member

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    I guess it is a possibility!
     
  13. mmafia1

    mmafia1 Senior member

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    @attesom

    Can I just jump in here, first ill quickly introduce myself, I too think of myself as a bit of a Ray Ban know it all, I've been collecting them for years, both Bausch and Lomb and Luxottica. Only aviators models though. I make half the YouTube videos out there about them!

    Regarding the above gradient aviator model, the lenses are correct. They are from the 70's, before Ray Ban was put on the top corner but they started etching the lenses. They did quite a few models with the etching the opposite way round.

    Also on the frame under the nose bridge where if says "B&L 1/10 12K" does it have a "GF" after? Can't quite tell from the pic.
     
  14. musehead

    musehead Active Member

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    @trubritishgent it happens sometimes, people put modern day luxottica lenses on Vintage B&L Frames that's what I think happened or even less likely it might be a pair that was made during the transition period in 1998 when B&L sold to luxottica. The frame sounds authentic though.

    @mmafia1 I know they didnt use the white ray ban logo until the 80's but the B&L laser etching is not correct, look at the picture chuckie egg posted, that's how the B&L etching should be facing to the right from the hinge (the picture is obviously upside down so flip it to get the correct orientation) Now take a look at the etching of attesom's pair, the B&L etching is facing up and seems to be on only one lens. B&L laser etched both lenses either next to the hinges always facing towards the right or at the very top also facing right, depending on the age.
     
  15. PTWilliams

    PTWilliams Senior member

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    Nov 1, 2009
    Thanks so much for being here.
    In terms of cost-benefit, focusing on quality and style and not rarity, which Ray Ban should I be looking for?
    Thanks
     
  16. musehead

    musehead Active Member

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    My favorite B&L Ray Ban aviator model is the B-20 Chromax driving series. When you're wearing them reds and greens pop its hard to describe but everything looks more defined, they're an amazing lens. The frame is light and the nose pads are the most comfortable B&L made. You can find them on ebay for 150-300 dollars, around 100 if you're lucky. I would not pay more than 250 for a pair though. They come in the more common gold or in a rare matte black frame. The matte black frame is my favorite it pairs really well with the orange reddish B-20 lens. One last thing that make these already sublime sunglasses even better is that the Ray Ban logo is gold and has a little thunderbolt next to it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
  17. Ianiceman

    Ianiceman Senior member

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    Keyboard War Room
    

    I don't claim to have anything like Musehead and co's knowledge, but being as a huge selection of Ray Bans are available at retail for about $120, surely this a question of individual personal taste?

    And to the others who said Ray Ban no longer makes aviators (did you really say that?) of course they still do. I would be very surprised if they EVER stop making their bread and butter styles - aviators, wayfarers, clubmasters, no matter how exotic and trendy their other styles become.

    Perhaps what is meant is that Ray Ban aviators were first designed for USAAF pilots and RB no longer supplies the military. That honor seems to jump back and forth depending on contract arrangements between American Optical and Randolph Engineering, I expect in the same way that Wenger and Victorinox are either the 'official' or the 'genuine' (or was it 'original'?) Swiss Army Knife.

    Anyway I had some AO aviators and they were rubbish. Plating wore off, hinges got loose, didn't last long at all. I have a couple of RE pairs and they are excellent so far. I still love my RBs too!
     
  18. Chuckie Egg

    Chuckie Egg Senior member

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    Sounds awesome [​IMG] Does modern Ray-ban still make them?
     
  19. musehead

    musehead Active Member

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    They no longer make them. I do know Luxottica brought back their version of ambermatics and pink changeables but they don't compare to the quality of their vintage B&L counterparts, that's what makes B&L Ray Ban aviators so highly sought after especially some rare models that can fetch upwards of 2500 dollars.
     
  20. Chuckie Egg

    Chuckie Egg Senior member

    Messages:
    141
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    Jun 12, 2013
    Just viewed your YT videos - really interesting & informative, thank you! [​IMG]
     

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