So now that you know the history of dirt drops, here's where we're coming from with this whole Gator bar idea. Our distributor in Japan makes these funky bars that fit mountain bike brake levers and I find them in their catalog and get to thinking, what if these fit Rohloff shifters? Well they don't, mostly because of the ergo bends in the drops. There are a few ways to get the shifters to fit, but ATMO they look like a chode.
So I did a drawing, and Tange made me some samples. I didn't like how they felt, so I made another drawing and they made those too. Those sucked a little less, so I made a third drawing and voila, the Gator bar. The long handle allows you to mount the shifter anywhere on the drop handle. We're super magnanimous, so they fit bar ends and other stuff, but we really want you to use Rohloff hubs. Seriously, they're cool.
So why are they so reachy? Because handlebar bags are dope as f***, but the problem with bikepacking handlebar bags is that they are so wide that they won't fit most drop bars, including almost all the traditional dirt drops. You want the weight to be as far back as possible, so that means running a shorter stem. But you won't want the hoods to be so far back, so the ramps need to be longer. Velo Orange obviously saw this idea somewhere, or maybe they though of it on their own, but either way they get why you might want to have usable hoods and drops and still be able to use the brake levers from either position.
But really none of that matters because the same Japanese folks who gave me the idea for the Gator bars invented the negative-drop dirt drop, and then made them out of carbon fiber. So really, everything else is already obsolete. You're welcome. Now go ride bikes.
Also, Go Fund Charlie's recovery fund. We wouldn't even be having this argument without him. Such a badass!