Last month I modified my Google Glass to work with my prescription lenses. It was better but there was still room for improvement. Some of the problems I had:
- The zip tie was tight but, the shortened arm of my eye glasses could slip out. A few times I took my glass out of my bag and it had come undone
- The zip tie allowed the for glass to pivot up and down. This made it difficult to keep the Glass optic aligned if I was doing anything active.
- It looked weird – I had a zip tie holding everything together!
I decided that something had to be done. After some thought, I realized that shrink tubing my be the answer.
Positives to shrink tubing:
- More surface area connecting the Glass to the frames = more stability, less vertical wiggle.
- Less likely to come apart
- Still a semi-permanent non-destructive solution – I could always put it back to the default factory configuration.
- Better looking – no more zip tie, very little bulk
Negatives to shrink tubing:
- Less room to adjust the alignment of Glass
- Using a heat gun on the sensitive Glass – could melt / damage them
After weighing out the pros and cons I decided to go for it!
I assembled my tools. Shrink tubing, a heat gun, scissors, an exacto knife, and my Glass / Glasses creation.
I started by cutting off the zip tie that has holding it all together.
Next I cut the shrink tubing to length. I had to be able to reach all the inputs on the Glass – the power button, USB port and camera trigger.
Next I had to stretch the tubing a bit. Out of the package, it was too small to fit over the optic. I places the tube onto the scissors and opened them, stretching the tube wider.
Once stretched, I slid the tube over the optic and onto the arm of Glass.
Paying close attention, I made sure that the tube was ale to clear the USB port, camera trigger and power button.
Once I got everything where I wanted it and aligned, I used a zip tie to hold it in place. I plugged an old USB cable into the port in an attempt to protect it a little bit during the heat shrink process.
I decided to wrap as much of the Glass as I could into a heavy rag to protect it from some of the heat during the heat shrink process.
It didn’t take long for the heat gun to get hot. I slowly ran the gun over the tube, shrinking it to fit, being careful to not get anything too hot. This was a nerve wracking experience. I needed to shrink the tube, but not damage the Glass. It was a balancing act.
I let the tubing cool down before I remove the zip tie and unplugging the USB cord. I was very happy with the end results. The tube had shrank down, firmly sandwiching the Glass to the frame of my prescription glasses.
Glass powered up with no problem. I hadn’t killed them! To my surprise, touches worked through the plastic tubing! Bonus win!
I opened up the “MyGlass” app on my Nexus 7 – Bluetooth and Wifi were still working.
I also tested the USB port for charging and data transfer. Both tests worked. Next was taking pictures and video. Both of those passed as well. I had done it.
The end result is a clean and nearly invisible fusion of my Google Glass and my prescription eye glasses.
This is the first time that I truly feel that Glass fits me properly. This is a game changer.
I know that Google is working on prescription Google Glass, and I really hope that I’m part of that pilot program. Until then, I plan on pushing the limits of Glass. I’m a member of the “Google Glass Explorer Program”, explorers take risks and discover new things. That’s what I’m trying to do.
I have a feeling that this won’t be my last mod to Glass. I have more ideas but they start getting into the destructive realm and I’m not sure if I’m willing to go down that one way path. Time will tell.