With a cool-looking rimless design, Galibier Ardennes Shield Optics are lightweight, affordable, no-fuss cycling glasses for clocking up miles on Irish roads.
Designed for general cycling use covering road, leisure and mountain biking, the Ardennes Shield Optics have an eye-catching rimless deign to keep them lightweight, while maximising vision and come with three lens options too.
The shades weigh in at just 28 grams and the frame legs suit all open cycling helmets.
The three lens options give plenty of scope for riding conditions – clear, low light for winter eye protection and red/blue plasma for sun.
What Galibier Say…
The Shield frameless OPTICS are constructed from advanced polycarbonate materials to result in a flyweight 28g.
The profile was designed from existing and perceived airflow modelling on a cyclist. The result is an aerodynamic profile which yields a full panoramic field of vision. With superb Cat3 rating for clarity, they offer total protection for cycling, on and off road.
All options offer CE UV400-protection, with Cat3 sun rating on the Black Plasma. The same layer that creates the form of the glasses etches our logo onto the lens.
The key to the crisp optical clarity of these Ardennes glasses is the innovative production method for the lens, which is heat formed from a large square of flawless polycarbonate. The process creates a smooth shape with contours in two directions to process the airflow over your face.
The centre section of each piece (163*59mm) is laser cut and the remainder recycled. It is this section that has the least distortion after the shape is formed. The lens is then finished with a permanent Plasma coating* to reduce glare and blinding reflections.
- Clear Plasma – Low light and dull conditions Plasma reflective to reduce glare.
- Black/Red Plasma lens – Medium to bright light. Excellent all-purpose Mirror lens offering truer colour perception in sunny conditions. 14.5% light transmittance
- Bronze – Changeable riding conditions with Low light enhancement.
*(Not on bronze option)
- UV PROTECTION: The first consideration in performance sunwear – all Plasma lenses offer 100% protection from Ultraviolet (UV) light.
- BLUE LIGHT: Plasma lenses reduce the amount of Blue Light that enters the eye, resulting in greater contrast between colours and a more pronounced brightness of objects.
- HEV LIGHT: HEV light has been implicated as a cause of age-related macular degeneration. Plasma lenses block these harmful rays, effectively managing HEV light and offering further protection to the eye.
Revo lenses block all harmful rays between 280 and 400 nm, managing HEV light and controlling the critical area of 380-455nm.
Galibier Ardennes Matt Black – Clear Plasma lens: Ride Impressions
Tipping the scales at just 28 grams, Galibier’s Ardennes Shield Optics are featherweight, but that doesn’t mean flimsy either. Yes, the rimless nature of the design increases an added flex to the lens, but it remains both sturdy and strong, holding shape.
The lens wrapped snuggly across my face and wasn’t prone to slippage or moving once riding. These were my first pair of rimless glasses, so they took a little bit of adjusting to on my first ride – I normally wear 100% Speedcraft. I could notice the black nose mount and the top edging of the lens in my line of vision, but after few kilometres I was no longer drawn to them and was concentrating on the road ahead.
The clear plasma lens I wore is designed for low light winter riding. Although only a slight tint on the lens it helped brighten a normally dull day and took the edge off sharp light, which are annoying factors when riding at this time of year. I liked that the Ardennes seemed to find that ‘happy medium’ in changing conditions.
What I did notice in very direct low sunlight was a slight reflective glare, but this is something I put down to the rimless lens design.
On the move, there were no issues with fogging – even in some crappy weather. In a 30-kilometre, non-stop door-to-door wet ride they held their own. While needing a few thumb swipes along the way to clear the vision, I didn’t feel the need to take them off and stash them in my pocket due to fogging.
However, on other occasions when stopped for a breather the glasses tended to fog, but quickly cleared once rolling again.
Packaging is simple and tidy. The glasses came in a soft bag that doubles up as a lens cleaner and is housed in a neoprene bag, which makes them easy to find before a ride. A missed trick with the neoprene bag would have been velcro straps on the back (instead of hoops) to attach the bike frame as a handy carrier bag.
All told, if you’re looking for a good quality, affordable pair of riding glasses, the Ardennes will be a good fit. Granted, they didn’t quite match up to my 100% Speedcrafts, but they are a third of the price. For winter grinds and training rides they work great and priced at £39 means you won’t be afraid to get them dirty or sweaty.
+ Competitively priced
+ Snug fitting
– Prone to fogging when stopped
– Slight lens glare in direct sunlight
- Matt Black – Clear Plasma lens
- Matt Black – Black/Red Plasma lens
- Matt White – Black/Red Plasma lens
- Matt White – Bronze lens
Nestled in the heart of the Cooley Mountains in Louth, Galibier is an Irish-owned cycling clothing company. Renowned for their wide range of road cycling wear, they have also recently branched out into off-road with the introduction of their Contact gloves, Enduro jerseys and multi-functional gilets and jackets.