While Elaine and Zeus the Cat keep an eye on the homestead, Ure’s truly will be off to the eye docs for a one year (or so) follow-up to the eye surgeries this morning.

As you’ll recall, this is from a conventional IOL of some 25-years going bad (by slipping out of position) and having to fall back to an anterior chamber lens.  While it works, having to wear rigid gas permeable contacts has been something I wouldn’t put my second worst enemy through.

But in case you ever run into personally, or know someone who has been through the mill on this stuff, here are a boatload of hard contact lens tips that they don’t tell you at the doctor’s place.

(Continues below)


This is not to find fault with the docs, it’s just that (as we are forever saying around here) everything is a business model.

Since most eye group practices (practi?) have an attached contact and eyeglasses shop, I understand there is some rationale to having them fit the first of any lens changes.

You go in, get fitted for the right lens, it’s ordered, and then when it comes in you go back to make sure the tear fluid is flowing right and all that.

However, in my case, once I was through the one-fitted by them, I got my prescriptions in written form and promptly became a lifetime customers for www.lens.com.

The price difference is amazing.

In a doctor’s (captive optical) shop the Boston EO series I wear sets me back $108 per lens – as of last year.

On the other hand, it was about $32 per lens at www.lens.ciom.  And since the manufacturing tolerances are tight, I ordered a total of half a dozen pairs.

I’m out, too, so it’s a good time to recheck fitment before I order another huge supply.  So one for each eye from the doc’s place (unless there is no change) and then a big order to I have spares on hand.

The reason for losing lenses is simple:  I work around the place here…lots.  And when a lens drops on, oh, a 6-acre field when you’re bush-hogging (and it’s stuck somewhere in the goggles) no telling whether it will ever be found.  Down on hands and knees with chiggers ain’t this old boy’s cuppa tea.

Some other learnings – in no particular order.

  1. Shop prices on saline.  Equate brand from Amazon is a good alternative to big brands.   If you get Equate Saline Solution for Sensitive Eyes Twin Pack, 12 fl oz, 4 count, fort $22, it’s 48 oz., or $0.4583 per ounce.  Bausch and Lomb?  Well, they are actually cheaper at the moment: Bausch & Lomb Sensitive Eyes Plus Saline Solution, 12-Ounce Bottles (Pack of 6) is running about $30 or #0.4166 per once.  Because we do lots of useful math around here, we can buy a cheap bottle of vodka at the local package store for $20 and that’s 59 ounces.  So that pushed out to $0.3389 per ounce which gets us back to some interesting discussion of which medical supplies cost what.  Self medicating is cheaper, lol.
  2. Next thing I’ve learned – and fairly recently is the Lobo brand of RGP contact cleaner is non-abrasive and does a fine job with less irritation that the abrasive types.  Don’t know if it will work as well over a longer term, but a pair of contacts making 90 days of use is something of a reason to party around here.
  3. Bausch & Lomb makes a good eye vitamin called ARED2 – which apparently has something to do with Age Related Eye Disease, second study.  Taking two of these per day, morning and night, doesn’t seem to hurt.
  4. Alcohol consumption really matters.  If I have three adult beverages before dinner no impact on the eyes, but with four then the next morning my eyes are less precise.  Sobriety has its payoffs, and this is one of them.   Sell your distillery stocks before the word gets out.
  5. This alcohol deal may be related to either dry eyes or Vitamin A being washed out of the body by booze.  I’ll ask the eye doc, but not sure if he’ll have the answer.
  6. On Vitamin A eye drops, there are some OTC drops to look into, or talk to your eye doc.
  7. But on the Wetting the best I have found so far are the Lobo brand wetting drops and I’m just trying some new drops from Japan.  For the dry eye angle, I’m going with Rohto Hydra Dry Eye Drops 0.40 oz (Pack of 3) which are a bout $21 and in a few days some of their Vitamin 40a drops will show up.
  8. The real place for a great eye care product is in the cleaning machines.  I’ve tried two of the VueSonic Patented Portable Contact Lens Cleaning Device, Mini Ultrasonic 3D Contact Lens Cleaner, Contact Lens Case but with mixed results – see my product review on that page.  I’ve also tried several other ultrasonic whiz bang sounding machines that didn’t seem to do much better than a good manual cleaning job.
  9. 9.  Consider using the software program f.lux to max your monitors to a color temp of 4800 K at max white.  Above this, I find long-term eye strain.  Has to do with limiting UV output which can go – on some monitors  – up to 7200K.

I realize this may be TMMI (too much medical information) especially for a Monday, but print it off and save it for a few years.  It’s axiomatic in the eye business that everyone will get cataracts if they live long enough.  And for people with other forms of eye disease (like a mild corneal dystrophy like Ure’s truly has) RGPpita ( I leave it for you to decode) is something to be ready for.

Like prepping, driving within the speed limit, not texting while driving, and so on all makes like roll smoother, so does collecting little bits of eye health tips like this should you ever need it.

Hope you don’t, but like draft numbers back during the Vietnam War, sometimes you don’t much to say about when you’re “numbers come up.”  Seems to be one of those universal gotchas to life.

Around the Ranch

We have only had a simple screen door on the shop for the past 13 years but now we have a nice, solid (and did I mention heavy?) steel door.

Works like a champ.

Elaine finished her project, installing the pet-proof screening around the screen porch.

I kept offering to bring in the BPT’s (big power tools) but she’s not much for loud noises so she did a perfect job using hand tools.  And it was quiet.  Her, an Amazon Echo playing music, the cat, the birds, and oh, joyous peace.

About drove me crazy, though.  I could have brought over a miter saw, compressor, couple of nailers and been done in an hour… Better yet:  She wanted some custom thickness wood and I’ve been itching to get a thickness planer…would have been a perfect sales pitch time….

But no.  With no sell on the big noise-makers, there wen’t the dream of a thickness planer.

Still, real men make noise when they’re working.  I think that’s why I got banished to the shop…

(Maturity is defined as that moment in a man’s life when the new issue of Family Handyman or Woodworking seems more useful than the new issue of Playboy.  Another sign is when “Not Your Father’s Root beer” sounds better than chugging shots…)

Welding Equipment

Rolled into town to get oxygen for some cutting chores with the oxy-acetylene rig Friday.  Turned out the place I went for $11 gas wouldn’t refill it because they weren’t sure if it was a customer-owned tank.

So with directions, I found the place where I’d bought the tank and they charged me a bit more ($16) but they also swapped me from an S size steel tank to a 4K tank.  Damn nice of ’em.  They muttered something about a 1.5 instead of a 1.25 in local weldingese.

Also finally got tired of tiny disposable shielding gas on the MIG rig, we stepped up for a 60 CF shielding gas tank.  A couple of electric welding projects are in view.  The combination of Innershield flux wire plus shielding gas and now you’re talking from mighty fine beadwork…in the hands of someone more skilled than…er….uh….the Prince of Burn-through?

Acetylene prices are about $35 for a refill…so as hobbies go, welding stuff is fairly inexpensive.  If you find some scrap and have an imagination.

I keep looking at one of those weld-it-yourself bumper kits  at www.movebumpers.com for the truck.  Of course that would lead to setting up a chrome plating operation and now we’re talking EPA and…no, maybe that will be on hold for a while.  Next lifetime.

Oh, they also had a gorgeous new Makita metal cutting chop saw on display.  I’m sure it’s a step up from our old (but 1/10th the price) Harbor Freight special from years ago.  But it claims 4X faster cutting by using a carbide tipped blade instead of abrasive wheels…so now I have to see if I can find such a blade for our old beast…

The Makita blade is available (Makita A-90532 12-Inch 60-Teeth Dry Ferrous Metal Cutting Saw Blade with 1-Inch Arbor” but don’t expect to go out to lunch on the change from a $100 bill.

I’ll have to run  some cost benefit numbers besides, I’ve got half a dozen chop saw wheels in stock.  Did I mention prepping to excess?

I’d go check my arbor size about here, but first some headlines and a peak at the market.  This being Monday, we need to sort of sneak-up on getting too serious…

Write when you get rich (or find a tool I don’t own, lol)


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