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The Moulton bike can be taken apart for travel (just using it as an example, I don't have one). The cables that run from the handlebar to the rear triangle are not single continuous cables but are made of sections which are connected together by a sort of threaded "union" of some kind. What are these cable-union-devices called?

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Not sure if there is a tradition term for these. At the time of writing I found Some products simply called cable splitters or separators and Ritchey quick disconnectors

4

Cable Splitter is the name you're looking for.
Another brand name is "Easy Split" but that's essentially the same thing.

JTek has some that look like this:
https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/images/products/medium/8560_4.jpg
The end on the right hand side is clamped down with one or two tiny grub screws, which feels like a weak point. Plus they look to scratch up the frame's paint at that point, and make a tap-tap noise on every bump.

Another link of relevance: http://stashablesteeds.tumblr.com/post/40348418610/cable-joiner-designs

A competent machinist could make something like this, possibly starting from a chunky Chicago bolt, aka sex bolt and then making some way to secure the wire coming down from the bars. Even a permanently silver-soldering the inner wire to the fitting might work, and if it breaks while out, you'd just fit an entire spare normal inner cable.

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  • Do these require cable stops to work? Or could I simply connect two sections of cable inside "continuous" housing if I extend the cable inside out past the ferrule, provided I have the little lozenge on the end of the cable? =======]~~~~~~XXXXXOXXX~~~~~~~~~[========= What I'm looking to do is swap handlebars relatively easily. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Dec 31 '18 at 18:21
  • @Tᴚoɯɐuo the inner cable has to be broken at the joiner, so there's an upper and a lower length. The end up at the bars needs the stopper like normal, with its loose end terminated in the joiner by some grub screws. The second, lower run of cable could use either the cut-off or a second inner cable with a stopper, or just use grub screw clamps again. – Criggie Dec 31 '18 at 20:02
  • @Tᴚoɯɐuo One risk is that that threadding together the joiner together may undo the lay/twist of the inner cable. Another option is to just remove the brake/gear links to the rear of the bike and do them up again on reassembly. – Criggie Dec 31 '18 at 20:05
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    @Tᴚoɯɐuo continuous housing might work fine, but you'd have to try it to be sure. To swap between handlebars, you would have to have multiple joiners set at exactly the same distance down from the bars. Not impossible but fiddly. I'd suggest carrying a couple of spare inner cables as a just-in-case. – Criggie Dec 31 '18 at 20:06
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    Depending on how frequently you intend to change handlebars a new set of cables may come cheaper.(You could even try to source a dealer's pack.) I wouldn't try to reuse cables though because threading the compressed section back through the housing is most likely to cause trouble. – Carel Jan 2 at 12:31

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