STANDARD ISSUE. When they say ‘military grade,’ they mean it. Randolph Engineering is the prime eyewear contractor for the U.S. Military and allied Air Forces worldwide, and has been for the past 30 years. Randolph’s oldest design, the sturdy ‘Aviator,’ has served as standard issue for pilots and even astronauts—in Vietnam, Desert Storm, Korea, Kosovo and beyond.
MIL-SPEC. Randolph not only meets but surpasses rigid military specifications (Mil-Spec) set by the U.S. Department of Defense for reliability, value and performance. The Randolph team scours the world for special alloys that won’t rust. Their lenses are chemically tempered for impact resistance. And they guarantee their glasses’ solder joints for life.
MADE IN THE USA. Still based in its namesake town of Randolph, Mass., and still family-owned and -operated, Randolph Engineering continues to utilize the custom machinery designed and hand-built by its two founders in 1972. Each pair of sunglasses passes through more than 200 production stages, most of them by hand. See a few of them in the video above, and click here to tour the factory with GQ and Michael Williams of A Continuous Lean.
FORM FOLLOWS FUNCTION. Randolph’s frames are as stylish as they are sturdy—and icons as varied as Don Draper, Johnny Depp, Travis Bickle and Michael Bastian have shown that opting for world-class quality is a pretty good look.
Which pair are you eyeing? Learn more about individual models below, and browse the full selection here: Shop All Men’s Sunglasses
The Aviator. Randolph’s flagship model, these have been standard issue for the U.S. Military since 1982. Note the signature, un-curved ‘bayonet’-style arms, designed to fit comfortably under a pilot’s headgear. Shop Now
The Sportsman. Designed for outdoor enthusiasts, this sturdy frame (also available with polarized amber lenses) adds a sweat-bar on the bridge—a cool vintage design detail that’s also totally functional. Shop Now
The Crew Chief. Classic styling updated with modern materials, including a high-tech metal alloy eyewire for maximum strength while maintaining a thin profile. Like all Randolph models, it features 98–100% UV protection. Shop Now
The P-3 Retro Submariner. Originally designed for the U.S. Navy as a prescription frame for use inside submarines. The ‘cable’-style arms wrap around your ear for a secure fit. Shop Now
[Top two photos and video courtesy of Randolph Engineering.]