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Opinions on Look KG386 frame set needed(23 posts)

Opinions on Look KG386 frame set neededTrekMan
Dec 21, 2001 4:45 AM
I'm currently in the market for a carbon frame set and I'm looking at either a Trek 5500 or a Look KG386. The Look is going to be a bit cheaper that the Trek, but is it as good as Trek?
very different geometry...C-40
Dec 21, 2001 5:09 AM
The LOOK KG386 frame has a slack 72.5 degree seat tube angle in all sizes. This effectively shortens an already shorter than average top tube. The head tube length is also quite short.

Compared to a Trek, you can expect to use a stem that is as much as 20mm longer, with more head tube spacers, or perhaps a 30mm longer, 80 degree stem, flipped over to produce a 100 degree angle.
hmmmm, that don't sound good.TrekMan
Dec 21, 2001 5:20 AM
Oh well Trek 5500 here I come!

Dec 21, 2001 6:01 AM
The KG386 has the same geometry as a Lemond. Look is known for having a LONGER than standard top tube. i.e. the 57cm frame has a tt length of 57.4

Go to and see for yourself.
Dec 21, 2001 9:53 AM
Take a close LOOK at the KG386 geometry chart on the website. The "57" size that you mention shows a center to center dimension "A1" of 59.5cm, which is equivalent to 61cm measured center to top. A 57.4cm top tube is significantly short than average for this frame size. Why they call a frame this size a 57 makes no sense.

Perhaps there is an error in their chart???
hmmmm, that don't sound badTrekMen
Dec 21, 2001 12:51 PM
Oh well Look KG386 here I come.
Here are the factsDave Hickey
Dec 21, 2001 7:36 AM
Look top tubes are listed below. Not shorter than average

A2 B
49 530
51 539
53 548
55 569
57 574
59 579
Should we call you Dave...Nessism
Dec 21, 2001 8:56 AM
or Mr. Look?

Nice work pasting that drawing into your post.

Merry Christmas.

Thanks Ed, Merry Xmas to you and yours (nm)Dave Hickey
Dec 21, 2001 9:25 AM
Not the KG386 geometry chart???...C-40
Dec 21, 2001 10:21 AM
Don't know where you got this chart, but it's not the one that comes from the current LOOK website. The current KG386 chart does not list an A2 dimension at all.

There is an A1 dimension that is the same as your drawing's A2, but the numbers aren't the same.

For example, the "51" size shows an A1 dimension of 53.5cm center to center, which would be 55cm center to top. This make no sense at all. In this size, the top tube is only 53.9cm. The 72.5 degree STA further reduces the effective top tube length compared to frames with 73 to 74 degree seat tube angles.

Top tube lengths for this size would typically run 54.5 to 55.5cm in length.

The LOOK website's geometry chart must be in error. The listed head tube lengths don't make sense either. In the above example, the frame which measures 53.5cm c-c only has a head tube length of 105mm. My equally sized Colnago has a 133mm HT. It's virtually impossible to make the TT this short on this size of frame.

If the sizes listed on your chart are accurate, the top tubes length are average for the frame size, but are still effectively shorter due to the 72.5cm STA.
I cut and pasted from LOOK's website for the 386Dave Hickey
Dec 21, 2001 10:38 AM
If you look at the chart on the website, the A2 dimension is the frame size. Eg: 51cm frame is A2 51cm center to center
chart from LOOK international...C-40
Dec 21, 2001 2:12 PM
This link brings you to the geometry chart that you posted.

It makes more sense.

The top tubes still are about 1cm shorter than many others. The 53cm (c-c) has a 54.8cm top tube length that is effectively 1.1cm shorter than the 54.3cm TT on my Colnago and about .9cm shorter than the 54.5cm TT of the closest size Trek (56cm).
Try this link...Mickey
Dec 21, 2001 10:36 AM

This chart is definitely different.
Now I'm really confusedDave Hickey
Dec 21, 2001 10:44 AM
I have a 286 at home. It's the same frame geometry as the 386. I'll measure it tonight
Now I'm really confusedjaybird
Dec 21, 2001 11:57 AM
Me too...

C-40 may be right...

All I know is that I ride a 57cm Look and Lemond and a 59/60 in almost everything else...

What about Lemonds they are notriously long in the tt bikes. right? I thought that Lemonds were designed, to emulate the geometry that the great GL rides. Throughout most of his career he was riding Looks...
I too am thoroughly confused nowcioccman
Dec 21, 2001 12:44 PM
I will use the example of the 361 because I'm familiar with it. The shortest TT length I see is 538 (53.8cm) That is longer than two of my 53cms. With A2 being equal to A1 on all sizes, this will be the effective size, and closest to C-T measurement. Therefore, the 52cm c-t has a 54.8 TT, That to me is longer than normal. The 50cm at 53.8 has a longer TT than my 53cm's which both currently have 53.5 TTs. When you add a less steep ST angle, the seat will be moved an additional distance toward the back, thus moving a riders seat back a bit more and further extending the front/back length of the bike. Right? Please let me know if I'm wrong here.
seat tube angle....C-40
Dec 21, 2001 1:04 PM
It is a common misconception that a slack seat tube angle lengthens the top tube. Acutally it's just the opposite. For any given knee-over-pedal (KOP) positon the saddle must be moved further forward to achieve that position. The result is an effective shortening of the top tube. The seat tube angle only changes the nominal position of the saddle on the seat post, permitting the saddle to be moved back further, if needed.

For example, a frame with a 74 STA and 54.3cm TT (my Colnago) has the same effective top tube length as a 73 degree STA with a 55.5cm top tube (Litespeed for example).
re: Opinions on Look KG386 frame set neededcioccman
Dec 21, 2001 7:48 AM
They are quite different. Is the 386 lugged? I'm not sure, most Looks are. Just as good? Who knows? How do you qualify good? Weight? Stiffness? Quality control? There is a lot of Trek slamming here because they're buying up everything. People are slamming Klein because he'll move his production to Trek's place. That to me sounds like there are a lot of skeptics in regards to Trek's production. I understand people are generally not too happy with Trek's Icon stuff and I don't know anyone raving about Bontrager product. Personally, I'm not a big fan of mass mass production, like the OCLV. Lots of pro teams ride the Looks. One rides Trek that I know of. Personally? I'd take a Look over a Trek any day of the week.

Size - all the Look frames have in my opinion, longer than standard TT lengths. The 49cm sizes have longer top tubes than my 53cm's.

The Look cheaper than the Trek? Hmmmmm...... Where you at? France?

Good luck.
Klein under Trek's umbrellaTig
Dec 21, 2001 1:01 PM
Not a bash, but an observation. Trek claims their Advanced Concept Group developed the new ZR 9000 aluminum alloy. Gary Klein is supposed to be the sole creator, but they don't give him any personal credit. I guess that's what happens when you sell out to a big corporation. They own you and your creations. Then again, I have worked for many big corporations so I guess I'm a sell out too? LOL
Look 381iO
Dec 21, 2001 9:10 AM
Check out the 381i Look on their France website.The 381i has a taller head tube, integrated headset, and a new stiffer fork. I have been considering either a Look, Trek 5900, or C-40. The Look is quite heavier than either the Trek or the Colnago, unless Look is more honest with regard to frameset weights. The look has a slacker fork rake, while the Colnago has a longer wheelbase. I imagine that the Look has a " better " ride quality as compared to the Trek.
Look 381iCT1
Dec 21, 2001 4:44 PM
The LOOK frames do indeed have a much nicer ride quality than the Trek carbon frame I tried.

The weights are quite comparable. LOOK doesn't BS like Colnago or TREK. I love Colnago frames but I wouldn't trust old Ernesto to give an honest weight to save his mamas life. Treks just suck.

Look 381ilitespeedcat
Dec 21, 2001 4:56 PM
I have a Litespeed now and I am saving for the 381i. I believe that it is much better that anything Trek produces. I have test ridden a friends Look kg 281 and it rides as smoothly as my Litespeed and is stiffer when accelerating or standing to climb. In my opinion the Look kg 381i with integrated headset and 1 1/8" steerer is the way to go. I will relegate the Litespeed to my daily trainer/commuter. I am not trying to slam Trek or Litespeed. I was just extremely impressed with my friends Look kg 281. I don't care if the frame is a few hundred grams heavier. I'll drop the weight from me and be comfortable in the saddle thanks to the buttery smooth ride and snappy acceleration.
then you'd be "lookcat", right?(nm) :-)look271
Dec 22, 2001 3:55 PM