"Are those wooden glasses?" (Mangkono wood)

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Project by NicoJose posted 11-06-2011 05:06 AM 5062 views 7 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

~Yes, how COOL would it be to wear your favorite wood on your face 16 hours a day?

I bought a new pair of glasses on October 3, 2011. On October 26, while putting on my safety goggles, I didn’t realize I accidentally drop it on the floor. As soon as I stepped back, I broke the legs of my 23 day old glasses and my heart felt crushed cause I really liked them. Plus, it takes me a long time to break and replace a pair.

While picking up the broken pieces, I looked around my shop, my wood and my tools… I started to think. After a few minutes, I suddenly had a smirk on my face.

The Mangkono (Philippine Ironwood) wood is my favorite and one of the strongest/hardest wood in the world (see _ It has a natural brownish-purple color and the one in my dad’s collection is about 150yr old. I focused all my energy on personalizing my glasses. I used a solid piece of wood, bandsaw, diamond grinder, belt & disc sander and my travel-size carving set. Then, I used the parts and hinges of the broken pair, jewelry making kit and had my Dremel for finishing and buffering.

NOTE that any ordinary wood would break with the thin cuts I made, especially the ear brace area. I also had to try it on a thousand times to get the right fit since its my first time to make one. It was a good challenge going from a 6ft giant chair to an 8’’ eye glasses.

Anyway, I’ve been wearing it for 10 days now and it works like a dream. I get to wear Mangkono on my face like a geeky woodworker. Its the perfect conversation piece! If people ask for a sample of my work, I can actually say “you’re looking at it”. I’m happy to be a walking ad of my work. =p

-- Nico Jose; Designer/Maker &Artist

17 comments so far

View Alan S's profile

Alan S

176 posts in 2711 days

#1 posted 11-06-2011 05:15 AM

Awesome!! Maybe I’ll have to do this someday!


View canadianmajar's profile


17 posts in 1814 days

#2 posted 11-06-2011 05:20 AM

Awesome, I had to call over everyone in the house to have a look.

-- J

View Skylark53's profile


2622 posts in 2454 days

#3 posted 11-06-2011 05:26 AM

Great idea and very, very nice work.

-- Rick, Tennessee, John 3:16

View Eric_S's profile


1543 posts in 2589 days

#4 posted 11-06-2011 05:39 AM

Nico those look great. How are the lenses held in place?

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View usnret's profile


184 posts in 1902 days

#5 posted 11-06-2011 05:41 AM

Youare a GEEK, but those glasses are sweet. Now I think I want a pair. I wonder if Bubinga would work?

-- Chief Petty Officer USN(RET) 1991-2011

View majeagle1's profile


1426 posts in 2890 days

#6 posted 11-06-2011 06:00 AM

What a fantastic and creative idea! Beautiful job and they look great on you !

-- Gene, Majestic Eagle Woodworks,,

View sras's profile


4349 posts in 2523 days

#7 posted 11-06-2011 06:22 AM

Cool idea – a great way to turn disappointment into success! I suspect you will make more of these…

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View patron's profile


13522 posts in 2735 days

#8 posted 11-06-2011 08:48 AM

these look real italian cool

and they follow the ripples
on your head too lol

(it is just the ear pieces
that were broke guys)

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View NicoJose's profile


94 posts in 2016 days

#9 posted 11-06-2011 11:21 AM

@usnret: I don’t think bubinga would work. Tropical wood is harder than others in different climates. But, you could try using wood harders which you can purchase in home depot. You could also try lamination bending of different kinds of wood which will make it more durable than just a solid piece.


-- Nico Jose; Designer/Maker &Artist

View mmh's profile


3661 posts in 3116 days

#10 posted 11-06-2011 04:11 PM

Very cool! Now if I can only break my titanium frames . . .

You could have a custom order business here!

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View jeepturner's profile


938 posts in 2186 days

#11 posted 11-06-2011 06:10 PM

I broke my titanium frames this week, and I have thought about fixing them with a piece of wood. My glasses broke midway on the nose bridge. I don’t know if I have any wood dense enough though.
Thanks for the post and those are nice looking frames.

-- Mel,

View NormG's profile


5300 posts in 2398 days

#12 posted 11-07-2011 05:06 AM

Simply awesome

-- Norman

View Shannan's profile


28 posts in 2063 days

#13 posted 11-07-2011 05:04 PM

Those look fabulous!

View GabeB's profile


23 posts in 1811 days

#14 posted 11-08-2011 12:47 AM

Great way to use your tools and ideas for a great pair of glasses

View Dave's profile


11394 posts in 2234 days

#15 posted 11-08-2011 03:05 AM

love it;)

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are."

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