There’s nothing more useful than the right tool for a particular job. Rather than frustrating yourself with makeshift solutions that potentially get you nowhere, utilizing the correct tool can make your life a whole lot easier. It not only makes the job quick, tidy, and accurate, but once completed, you’ll have a finished product that can potentially wow your patient. Here are four of the hottest tools on the market and how to use them to simplify your optical life and make it more productive.
|1. Hilco’s Pro Bulls-Eye Screw Extractor is a clever gadget that will make it a snap to remove broken or headless screws. This small, handheld device uses a hollow lower jaw and a pin attached to a shaft which has as a large knob at the end. To begin a broken or damaged screw removal, turn the large blue knob counterclockwise so the pin and the lower hollow jaw provide enough space for the frame’s hinge assembly.||2. To remove a screw, file off its head and place the hinge portion of the eyewear into the unit with the bottom of the screw sitting inside the lower hollow jaw as shown in the illustration. Slowly turn the large knob clockwise, which will lower the pin. With the pin centered on the top of the screw, continue to turn the knob clockwise until the screw pops out of the bottom of the hinge.|
|3. Western Optical Supply has a clever set of hand tools called the PJ series. Standing for “parallel jaw,” PJ pliers have the unique characteristic of always having their jaws parallel to each other during the entire action of the plier’s jaws from completely open to completely closed. The jaws of traditional pliers scissor open and closed, so there is only one orientation of the tool’s jaws when they are parallel. With the PJ line, the jaws are always parallel. This configuration ensures even pressure and maximum force applied by the tool at the points you want on the frame.
||4. Notice how the jaws of this plier remain parallel as the jaws are closed in this picture in contrast to the open jaws’ position of the previous image.
|5. While this plier is named the Pantoscopic Tilt Plier, this optician is using it to align the temples for proper folding. The inside jaws of this plier have drilled recesses where the head and tail of a screw can be placed to obtain a secure grip on a hinge. That’s what this optician has done for this adjustment. A twist of the wrist brings the temple into proper folding alignment.||6. Amcon has a simple solution for cord-mounted rimless lenses. The Rimless Mounting Tool works in place of your fingers or that piece of tattered ribbon you’ve been keeping on the shelf for months. With a shaft about the size and shape of an optical screwdriver, the V-shaped front end accepts a straight metal probe with a curved tip.|
|7. When a cord-mounted rimless lens needs to be mounted, place the nylon cord into the V-shaped end of the tool and simple pull it back toward you, stretching and positioning the cord in the groove as you go.||8. One of the most common repairs opticians have to make every day is to replace worn or broken temple tips. Hilco makes the job easy with its temple replacement covers. They come in different colors, sizes, and configurations to suit your needs. To begin the replacement process, warm the temple cover in a salt pan or hot air blower to soft and loosen it, then pull it off.|
|9. What you’re left with is an exposed metal core wire. Simply take the temple cover, warm it a bit in the frame warmer of hot air blower, then slide the core wire’s end into the open end of the new temple cover. This should slip on easily. You can also shorten the temple’s length with this method. To do so, determine how much shorter you want the temple to be, then cut that much off the end of the core wire before you replace the temple cover. This is a very effective way of customizing temple length for patients.||10. The resulting repair is clean, neat, and attractive. If it’s been shortened, it also is properly customized for your patient’s needs. You can also add cable temple covers to temples this way, which can come in pretty handy for active adults. They’re especially suitable for kids’ eyewear.|
|11. OptiSource International has one of the most clever ideas for eyewear repairs that has come along in a long time. It’s called Snapit! As you can see from the photo, this screw has a standard screw section, but the lower portion has a tail that extends about six times the length of the screw itself. This portion can be used as a probe to easily align the screw into temple or eyewire hinges.||12. See how the Snapit! screw is now properly aligned in this temple hinge. The threaded portion has not yet been seated. Notice the blue plastic sleeve around the threaded portion of the screw. Once the screw is screwed into place, this plastic sleeve will help the Snapit! screw to stay locked in place, which will keep your patients from returning for replacements.|
|13. This illustration shows the Snapit! screw fully seated and its tail protruding out of the end of the temple hinge. All that is left is to snap off the lower portion of the screw’s shaft.||14. Here’s the final result. This optician simply snapped off the lower portion of the screw leaving the Snapit! screw firmly in place. It is advisable to file or smooth the screw end because it tends to be a bit rough when the lower shaft portion is removed.|
WHERE TO FIND IT
800-255-6161 • amconlabs.com
800-955-6544 • hilco.com
800-OPTISOURCE • 1-800-optisource.com
Western Optical Supply
800-423-3294 • westernoptical.com