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Thread: Lenticular single vision cast resin

  1. #1
    Master OptiBoarder MikeAurelius's Avatar
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    Lenticular single vision cast resin

    It's been awhile since I've been here. I apologize for past indiscretions and hope that we can wipe the slate clean and start fresh.

    I've been out of the plastics side of the business for quite awhile, but I've recently acquired some equipment and made some molds to test and the results were quite good. The question is this: is there still a market out there for cast resin (CR-39, high index etc.) single vision lenticular lenses? Carrier curves will be approx 4 base, with the lenticular ranging from 10.00 to 20.00 diopters with a bowl size starting at 45 mm, reducing to 30 mm for the 18.00 and 20.00 diopter bowls.

    If there's still demand for these, I do intend on creating a new product line.

    Professional input appreciated, either privately or publically.

    Edit to add: these will be SEMI-FINISHED ONLY and sold only to labs.
    Last edited by MikeAurelius; 01-25-2012 at 08:38 AM. Reason: additional clarification added
    NSFPWDWTHTA

    The lab at Aura Visual Concepts, Inc.
    Sauk Rapids, MN 56379

  2. #2
    Ophthalmic Optician Wes's Avatar
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    We use a handful of these per month for our basic trainees. I'm not sure there's a significant US (or developed world) market for this product though, considering CL usage, laser eye surgery, and IOLs. You may find more of a market in the developing world, where the aforementioned products and services aren't as readily available, and hyperopia is more prevalent.
    Still, it might give you an interesting project to play with.
    Wesley S. Scott, MBA, OO, LDO, ABOM, NCLE-AC

  3. #3
    Master OptiBoarder MikeAurelius's Avatar
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    Thanks for your input, Wes! Projects are fun and this one moreso, as the linear progression is to an aspheric (blended) mold.

    I have to wonder though, you mention all the high price options, with the economy in the tank, aren't those being affected as well?
    NSFPWDWTHTA

    The lab at Aura Visual Concepts, Inc.
    Sauk Rapids, MN 56379

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    Ophthalmic Optician Wes's Avatar
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    A year's supply of soft CL will average $200-$250 and give better overall vision to a high hyperope. People getting IOLs usually have it paid for by some form of public or private insurance. You may be on to something with the laser eye surgery decreasing due to the economy. We have some docs on here, maybe they'll weigh in.
    Wesley S. Scott, MBA, OO, LDO, ABOM, NCLE-AC

  5. #5
    Rochester Optical WFruit's Avatar
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    We get orders for two to three pairs a month for them. Now that Essilor has dicontinued Signet Armorlite's lenticular lenses, you may see more of a demand for them since the only other company I know of in the US that makes them is Aire-O-Lite. While their products are good and they do a lot of customization for what you want, they are a bit slow, and it's only going to get worse as they start to get Sigent's former customers.

    Now if you were doing Lenticular round segs, we do 2~3 a week of those....
    ...and in the frozen lands of Nador they were forced to eat Robin's minstrels, and there was much rejoicing.

  6. #6
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    The market is getting thin for these, mostly do to what Wess said but if you can sell em do it, but dont depend on it for retirement

  7. #7
    Master OptiBoarder MikeAurelius's Avatar
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    Retirement? Heh...nope. Niche manufacturing, that's all.
    NSFPWDWTHTA

    The lab at Aura Visual Concepts, Inc.
    Sauk Rapids, MN 56379

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    Enjoying the education drk's Avatar
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    Just a pimp for Mike A.

    I was fortunate enough to have him help me with a specialty job. His knowledge and workmanship was impeccable. No pecs at all.

  9. #9
    Master OptiBoarder MikeAurelius's Avatar
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    Thanks for the props, Doc!

    Update: I've had discussions with several specialty labs and the response so far has been good, especially (as Bill notes for round segs/curve tops). I am just waiting on some casting information and I should be ready to start some design work. Thanks to everyone who has responded!!
    NSFPWDWTHTA

    The lab at Aura Visual Concepts, Inc.
    Sauk Rapids, MN 56379

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    Master OptiBoarder MakeOptics's Avatar
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    Unfortunately or fortunately depending on what side of the puck you're on, a digital generator can produce these types of lenses onto the lens directly making a molded lens obsolete. If you can produce these with very little investment I say why not, but if it costs you a fortune you may find some enterprising lab undercuts you if you feel even the slightest bit of success in that segment of the market. In essence big risk with very little possibility of reward.

    Now if you are planing on designing a lens I would think with the number of questions asking about lenses with segment that have differing prism than the distance portion, you would come up with a tilted seg (tilting the segment plane creating base in prism in the seg, maybe 2 to three different prism values and you would be golden)

  11. #11
    Master OptiBoarder MikeAurelius's Avatar
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    I've never heard of a generator (digital or not) that can produce a Plus side lenticular surface (ie +16.00) on a relatively flat (ie +4.25) carrier. Back (minus side) sure, no problem, but not on the plus side. Now, if I'm mistaken, please let me know.

    Now, as far as prism segments are concerned...interesting! I'll put it on the white board!
    NSFPWDWTHTA

    The lab at Aura Visual Concepts, Inc.
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    Master OptiBoarder MakeOptics's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeAurelius View Post
    I've never heard of a generator (digital or not) that can produce a Plus side lenticular surface (ie +16.00) on a relatively flat (ie +4.25) carrier. Back (minus side) sure, no problem, but not on the plus side. Now, if I'm mistaken, please let me know.

    Now, as far as prism segments are concerned...interesting! I'll put it on the white board!
    Your right they're doing it in minus, but HOYA and Zeiss can and do surface the front of a blank for some of their designs. If any company sees any real meat on the bone your chewing, they could easily create programs to create what you are going to painstakingly design. Although usually the niche product market is a good market to be in, I would add a few more unique designs to the mix and call yourself a real specialty design house.

  13. #13
    Master OptiBoarder MikeAurelius's Avatar
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    I've had a chat with one of my local specialty labs (name withheld on purpose). He commented that while, yes, H and Z can and do surface the front side in fairly high base curves, a pre-cast front is always preferable to a lab-made front, especially if a remake is ever necessary down the road (patient moves or changes doctor/dispensers). He also noted that many dispensers are far more interested in "conventional" old-style pre-cast, and aren't wanting to pay the up-charge for a so-called "custom design".

    But you certainly are right about needing unique designs, and I take it to heart. Thanks for keeping the conversation going.
    NSFPWDWTHTA

    The lab at Aura Visual Concepts, Inc.
    Sauk Rapids, MN 56379

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    Master OptiBoarder
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    I only use a handful per year, but I'll keep you in mind.

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    Underemployed Genius Jacqui's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=PhiTrace;412270
    Now if you are planing on designing a lens I would think with the number of questions asking about lenses with segment that have differing prism than the distance portion, you would come up with a tilted seg (tilting the segment plane creating base in prism in the seg, maybe 2 to three different prism values and you would be golden)[/QUOTE]

    I mentioned this on here about a year or so ago and was told that I was completely crazy for even thinking of making them. Maybe it's just that no one wants ME to do it.
    Proud Member of the ABE Club!
    Don't feed the Beast...

  16. #16
    Master OptiBoarder MikeAurelius's Avatar
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    Perhaps more towards "none of the casters would consider making the molds" and mainly because demand would be so low. But if the mold is sitting on the shelf and just needs to be pulled and used, then there is no reason the lens can't be provided. The trick will be making the mold LOL.

    I've got it on my white board as a possible to-do item.
    NSFPWDWTHTA

    The lab at Aura Visual Concepts, Inc.
    Sauk Rapids, MN 56379

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