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How to Tune Up Oakley Juliets

By Kirsti Smouse

August 7, 2017

How to Tune Up Oakley Juliets

By Kirsti Smouse

August 7, 2017

A Guide to Restoring Oakley X-Metal Sunglasses

Our VP of Product and Innovation came up to my desk early on a Monday morning with a black sunglass case in hand.

“Check these out,” he said, handing off the case to me.

I peeled back the zipper to reveal a pair of 1st generation Oakley Juliets.

Green sprouted from the frames in various patches. The arm sleeves and nose pieces were sticky and oozing. The lenses were pitted and scratched.

“What happened to these?” I asked.

Jeff shrugged. He’d unearthed them from storage along with about 10 other pairs of sunglasses he’d picked up over the years.

He wasn’t even sure what they were. But he knew they were old. He knew they were Oakleys. And he knew an opportunity when he saw one

  • — an opportunity for free labor and parts.

And even though I could have balked at being the free labor factor in this scenario, it was a win-win all-around.

Jeff would get a pair of Juliets he could proudly display, and I’d get an article out of the deal. Plus, I saw a chance to restore a piece of Oakley history.

Here’s how it all went down:


 Pictures of damaged Oakley Juliet sunglasses before tune up

The Cleaning of the Frame

To start off the Oakley Juliet tune up, I removed the lenses, rubber components, and temples so that I could focus on just the metal itself.

These particular Juliets have a plasma finish I didn’t want to damage, so I stayed away from harsh chemicals for the cleaning. I used a toothbrush, some warm water, and a mild dish soap to scrub away the oils and dirt.

Deconstructed Oakley Juliet sunglasses

For a more intense cleaning, some recommend using an ultrasonic bath, although, this could potentially change the color of the finish. For polished Juliets, you could also try rubbing alcohol or silver polish.

Unfortunately, when I cleaned off the green fuzz, my worst-case fears proved true — the metal was corroded.

In search of a solution, Jeff reached out to Revant board member, Carlos Reyes, the former VP of Research & Development at Oakley.

This was his response —

Text message: Your best bet will be to disassemble the whole frame into its individual metal components and remove the PVD by bead blasting with a fairly fine grade of glass bead/sand mix. After that, you should have the bare metal which is a medium tone grey color. If you desire a smoother finish, you can then do a vibratory finish in some smaller ceramic media . . . Beyond that, you can also get a polished finish by then taking it through fiber ceramic and then finally walnut shell vibratory.

Bringing in the Professionals

Since I wasn’t about to invest in a bead blaster or ceramic vibrator, the DIY approach to repairing the Oakley Juliets was no longer an option.

Tyler, a Customer Experience Guide here at Revant, suggested The X-MAN Custom Metalworks. A few of our customers had sent in their X Metals to him and he came highly recommended. I reached out to The X-MAN, boxed up the Juliets, and he turned them around in just 1 day.

He couldn’t match the finish on these 1st generations because it’s a special anodized coating process, but the new flat plasma finish looks spectacular. He also saved the serial number.

Spinning gif of restored Oakley Juliets

In addition to the new coating, the X-MAN repaired the Juliet's loose nose bridge — installing new stainless steel pins and replacing the rubber with an exclusive X-MAN pharmaceutical-grade rubber that will never deteriorate like the original parts.

Instead of the loose, wobbly feel that happens to Juliets over time, the nose bridge is once again tight and solid.

It was a full tune up from orbitals to ear stems and the Juliets look as good as new.

The X-MAN offers this refinishing and tuning/tightening services for Romeo, Romeo 2.0, Penny, XX, Half-X, Mars, and X-Squared. Beyond repairs, he also offers custom refinishes. Check out his gallery for examples of custom work.

Changing the Rubber Components

The nose pieces and earsocks on the Juliets were toast.

They were sticky and the nose pieces were oozing. No amount of cleaning was going to bring these back from the dead, so I included Revant’s MaxGrip® Rubber Kit for Oakley Juliet in the box to the X-MAN, and he installed them.

Oakley Juliet Rubber Kit by Revant

The temple shocks and the gaskets at the orbitals were still in decent shape, although the temple shocks were slightly tacky. I put the temple shocks in boiling water, and this method seemed to work in drawing out the oils causing that stickiness.

If you need to replace your temple shocks or washers, you should be able to find those for sale on the internet.

Here’s an installation video that walks you through how to remove and install Oakley Juliet ear sleeves and nose pieces:

Replacing the Lenses

Lastly, the X-MAN swapped the damaged Emerald Green lenses for a pair of Revant Elite Rogue Green lenses.

Check out the full selection of replacement lenses for Oakley Juliet.

For this, you’ll need a T6 screwdriver (comes included with the lenses). If you've lost or stripped the screws at the orbitals, you can find new ones here.

Here’s a video on how to replace Oakley Juliet lenses:


The end result speaks for itself.

Click through the gallery to see details from the Oakley Juliet tune up.

Before and After comparison of restored Oakley Juliet
Back view of restored Oakley Juliet
Front of Oakley Juliet
Side angle of restored Oakley Juliet

Jeff couldn't be happier with his restored Oakley Juliets.

Jeff wearing his restored Oakley Juliets
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  • Mark Horn

    Nice write-up kirsti....thank you

  • Philip Paradine

    What can be done about the x metal piece and tightening it up where it meets the lens frame? Love my xmetals and still have them but the lens gets loose and they sag and do not sit on your nose properly after some time...

  • Mark Horn

    That's easy.....have the x-man rebuild them. They will be tighter than new and you'll never have to tighten them again.

  • SuperRob1

    This hurts my heart a little. I lost my beloved Juliets in April while at Walt Disney World. Near as I can tell, they fell off my head running to catch a bus at the Grand Floridian. Wasn't able to find them. Had purple iridium Revant lenses in them, too.

    I've got some Triggerman and Fast Jacket frames now, but they're not the same as those excellent Juliets. I miss them dearly.

  • the x-man

    you can always get another pair superRob1

  • Mark Horn


  • the x-man

    the best way to get an inexpensive pair of Juliet's is find a beater pair on craigslist or ebay.if they are loose and the finish is shot...that's good,youll bargain down the price to what is comfortable for your budget.send em to the x-man and have them tuned up and refinished in a custom color or back to oem specs.not only will you make your tune-up money back but if you decide to sell them ,but over the years if they get scratched again we can refinish them as many times as you want.kind of like a "perpetual blank canvas"...that's the beauty of the x-metal frames.

  • Zach Christensen

    Great write up for sure. Don't come across alot of info on the x metals much anymore aside from the forums. If anyone is looking to have the original plasma finish redone I offer the gen 1 plasma refinish among other refinishes. zwc0442 is my username on oakleyforums.

  • Tommy Fitzgibbon

    Awesome article, very informative. The Juliets are my favorite shades, and they're a perfect fit for the shape of my face. I'm on my third pair now, and they're pretty wobbly and beat up. I thought I was limited to whatever pieces I could find on eBay, but my buddy, Curtis Wegner, told me about Revant lenses, and now that I've found you I was able to find the X-Man. I've already ordered new Revant lenses for my Juliets. Once they arrive I will be shipping them to Mr. X for a complete makeover. I also have a pair of Crosshair 2.0 shades, which one of the lenses has delaminated. I find this odd since I only wear them on dress-up occasions, and they're always kept in a case. I attempted to go through Oakley's customer service links, for a servicing and possible warranty on the lens, however I was referred to their Luxotica website, which I utilized and never got a response. Rather than wait on a likely "no" for the warranty, and no availability for Crosshair 2.0 lenses on their website, I already ordered my new lenses from Revant. I love my old Oakley shades, and thanks to you guys I can keep wearing them.

  • Tommy Fitzgibbon

    I received my restored Juliets from The X-Man, and they are awesome. I was instructing on a firing range yesterday, for several hours in the sun, and my eyes did not suffer from any fatigue with the Revant Elite lenses. The frames were firm and felt like they did when my shades were new, and not one time did they feel like they were going to fall off my face. They are once again my favorite shades. I love them so much I may invest in another used pair from eBay, just to have them restored as a second pair. Thank you, X-Man, for your outstanding quality of work, along with your extremely fast turn-around time.

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