ray-ban : k5551
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product code : k5551 : £ 165
  • 1960's/70's gold fill frame marked B&L RAY-BAN USA
    and 10k GF

  • Original B&L G15 (grey/green) glass lenses

condition

size

lens spec

other info
  • Bausch & Lomb actually launched their 'Ray-Ban' sunglasses

    with this very design, in 1937 and it is still in production today.

    It was their response to an approach from an aviator in 1936,

    who needed better protection from the sun's rays during flights.

    Here they are in a 1939 US catalogue on sale to the public.

    This is what has become known as the classic Ray-Ban aviator

    and in WW2, B&L were to make their 'anti-glare' sunglasses for

    army and navy pilots, and other military personnel, hence General

    Macarthur wearing them in the Philippines in 1944
    . There were

    variations in specifications of these wartime Ray-Bans and while

    Macarthur wore the gold-fill frames, military issue was plain nickel

    silver. After the war, the style continued to be popular as they

    were practical for all kinds of outdoor activities and recreation,

    boosted no doubt by young US shooting champ, Arthur Cook, who

    won a gold in the 1948 Olympic Games in London and then modelled

    this very style back home in 1949. By the late 1960's with the

    price of gold rocketing, B&L reduced the gold slightly from 1/10

    to 1/20; this is still about 100 times more than you get today,

    which is why this frame has remained corrosion-free. It dates the

    pair to this time, the late 1960's or early 70's, and has the earlier

    pearlised nose-pads and much more desirable 'squared-off' arms,

    that are worked, not the more cheaply produced wire (round) ones,

    that came later. Ray-Bans of this era had moved far from their

    military origins and after a Walk on the Wild Side, Lou Reed was

    wearing them by 1976
    . A hardly worn pair, all the plastic elements -

    pads, temple tips - remain in good condition too. The lenses are

    original and of course un-etched as B&L did not start etching lenses

    until ten years later. All this adds up to one helluva authentic pair

    of Ray-Ban aviators from the late 60's early 70's and big part of

    American eyewear history.

                                                           — klasik

vintage sunglasses : unisex : 1960's/70's Ray-Ban Aviator by BAUSCH & LOMB<
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