Collectors Spotlight - December 2006 - banarno
Age: 42 / England
banarno: Lee Silver

Technically since 1993, so 14 years.

Like so many people, I remember seeing Greg Lemond race in the 1986 Tour De France wearing Yellow Factory Pilot Eyeshades, but I never really took to those, but then, the very next year, he wore a new breed of sunglasses called the "Blade" in Neon Yellow. I discovered that the lenses and earpieces were interchangeable, and I was totally smitten. It wasn’t until 1989 that he wore a brand new pair of sunglasses called Mumbos, supporting the now legendary HDO lens technology, so naturally I had to get a pair of these as soon as possible. Then came Sub Zeros in 1992, and two pairs of Zeros the year after. I would say it was at this point that I realized I was becoming a collector.

A Neon Green Blade, with Orange Iridium lenses bought back in 1988.

Maybe meeting some guy called Dann………

Hmmm, that’s difficult one, maybe one of the 2007 releases or something.

That’s a hard one, but I would have to say the 1st Generation M Frame Strip Lens, as it's simply the rarest thing I own, and impossible to replace.

Well, this is the part where I differ from almost everybody else on the site, as all of my collection is mint, boxed (with correct microbags, warranty cards, iridium scratches cards), and stored away out of sight. One of the big reasons for doing this is the fact that I hate cleaning them and risking scratching them. Another reason is to prevent my vintage pairs from becoming brittle. I only allow myself to wear one pair, which is the Ducati Five 3.0.

Well most of my buying is done online so I do not have a favourite retailer.

Oh yes of course! I have a few that I have done in my collection, and also have a few more yet to materialize when I get the time (and money). I have also seen some super efforts by fellow members on the review, especially when done properly, and there are some lovely combinations to behold in other member galleries.

It has always been just the sunglasses for me really, but I still like to buy the odd piece of apparel, and I wouldn’t mind a couple of shoes when I get around to it.

I am an avid astronomer, and up until recently I had a huge telescope (which I ended up selling) but I will be hunting round for something similar early next year I think.

I am a part time puppeteer, and perform the occasional show at a local school for the children (and adults!)

Also I've started to collect the odd comic or two, which I'm beginning to enjoy more and more.

Well it would be hard to actually give someone advice about collecting anything really, as collecting is such a personal pursuit, but regarding any form of collecting, you usually find people gravitate towards the rare, expensive items, or generally anything that they find cool or nice looking. Then, there's the items that have specific sentimental value, or cherished memories as well.

Regarding Oakley's though, there is also a difference between “having a big collection” where you wear everything in rotation, and run the risk of damaging them in some way, but simply enjoy the way they all look, and “being a collector” where you buy exclusively to store or display, and enjoy the aesthetics of each individual pair whether they suit you or not.

So, it’s a hard question to answer, but as with any personal hobby, you have got to want to collect for yourself and not others.

Well my family are just used to me by now, but none of them are really that interested, except my Mum, who likes to see every new pair I get (and to give me her opinion whether or not they suit me)

That might be back in 1992, when the first Sub Zero #1 arrived at a local surf shop, and my friend and I snapped up the only two pairs they had.

I am grateful to be spotlighted in this section of the website. A collective thanks to all the members of the O-Review for being such a close knit, family style community, and to those members I have had the pleasure of actually meeting, who were truly some of the nicest people I have ever met. Lastly, a big thank you to Dann, (the madman in charge) and Jason (the eternal hostmaster). Where would we all be without you?

posted by Dann
Dann Thombs
Nov 12, 2013 12:12 AM
Lee is the one responsible for turning me into a collector. I thought I knew a lot about Oakley until he started posting his collection, and inspired me to delve deeper into the product offerings from years past. I'm fortunate enough to possess a few items from the Lee collection now, and they stand as a museum quality representation of Oakley's fine history.
Rick (The Doctor) Fawcett
Nov 12, 2013 12:12 AM
Like Dann said, Lee is a consumate collector. He is incredibly discerning in his additions and he is incredibly knowledgeable when it comes to Oakley's, both past and current. His collection is proof that he appreciates Oakley's uniqueness. You can be sure you have never met a more meticulous caregiver of Oakley products. I know for a fact he goes to great lengths to maintain the pristine condition of his collection. I have appreciated getting to know Lee and I have learned a lot from him over the years. I have mostly learned that his collection is museum-worthy and I am glad we all had the chance to learn more about him through this month's Collector's Spotlight. Cheers my friend.
Nov 12, 2013 12:12 AM
Another great read for a long time great member. I can't get over that first picture...Too damn funny. Should ride on the tour in that getup. Congrats on the Spotlight, and may you continue to shine brightly, just not as bright as that pic HAHA!
Wilson Ng
Nov 12, 2013 12:12 AM
Lee is a fountain of Oakley knowledge, especially when it comes to the vintage stuff. cheers!
Mike Bahr
Nov 12, 2013 12:12 AM
If Lee doesn't know something about Vintage then it probably never was. A massive source of info, he has the most spectacular Vintage Oakley collections anywhere. (the images speak a thousand words) Proud to call you a good friend and a Mate

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