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Old 03-23-2011, 10:38 PM   #1
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Antenna Mod?

We've got a Sandpiper 35Loft. I set up my computer in the master bedroom, facing the washer/dryer area that we use as an office. Even though I'm a little higher there than elsewhere in the rig, I've noticed that wi-fi is moderate at best.

I know the walls and frame attenuate the signal to some extent, and I need a way to pipe the signal in. Well, I've got this retractable antenna for the TV, right? Can I piggyback a wi-fi antenna on that, and trace the wire back inside somehow to a repeater? I'm basically trying to avoid punching holes in the roof, and this idea struck me. Any thoughts? Anyone done this?

I can configure a wireless router, but I'm a lot less knowledgeable about the radio side of the system.
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Old 03-23-2011, 10:48 PM   #2
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silly question - where is your wi-fi signal coming from to begin with?
are you running a verizon wireless card that uses cell tower's or you trying to get the wi-fi signal from the parks?
Hope what I am asking makes sense
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Old 03-24-2011, 06:49 AM   #3
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I have a high gain WiFi antenna that I mounted on the top of my flagpole with zip ties. The antenna is connected to my USB Network adapter with a 25 foot extension cable. I route the cable through a gap at the bottom of a slide (it is very small diameter so no leaks or bugs).

I can pick up the WiFi signal when no one else in the park can at many campgrounds. At campgrounds that offer free "at site" WiFi I get very strong signal when others are marginal.
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Old 03-24-2011, 01:30 PM   #4
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Problem is that most laptop/netbook/tablet now have built-in WiFi - so it's not possible to improve reception when you get a signal from a park Access Point. What I mean is, that you cannot add a gizmo or a more powerfull antenna to receive or send a stronger signal.

Options.

1. Move around to get a better reception
2. Use another method to connect like
a) a cell phone with data plan, tethered to your USB port and then you can try and aim better.
b) a data card to connect to cell network.
c) use a USB WiFi adapter (you will then have a 2nd network adapter, so you need to disable the 1st one) and use a long 8-10 ft cable to get a better position for the device. (Like herk7769)
3. Use a repeater/bridge - that is pretty complex to setup at each campground, some access point do not allow repeaters to be installed.
4. Get a site close to the access point...
5. Or... and finally forget about it - and enjoy your time camping with your loved ones.

(PS. I am certified wireless network pro)
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:07 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by miatared View Post
Problem is that most laptop/netbook/tablet now have built-in WiFi - so it's not possible to improve reception when you get a signal from a park Access Point. What I mean is, that you cannot add a gizmo or a more powerfull antenna to receive or send a stronger signal.
That is not correct. We have an all-aluminum trailer that acts as a giant Faraday cage, effectively blocking almost all but the strongest wifi signal. I got a Linksys WRE54G, and set it up at the door of the trailer. This usually doubles the wifi strength we get inside the trailer. Also, you can buy a USB wireless network card and USB extension cord, and place the network card up inside a roof vent where it can get a signal. I turn off the built-in wifi in my laptop and use the external card in this way when I don't feel like setting up the range extender, like when we are staying only one night while traveling.

Linksys Wireless-G Range Expander WRE54G Repeater - External
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:08 PM   #6
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Denis, we're not camping. We're fulltiming, and 'net access is important to us.

Sherdep, so far, we're just using the onboard wireless gear and park wi-fi. In the rig, I get about 24Mbps. Outside, I get 54.

Terry, thanks for that link. Lou, what hardware are you using?
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:29 PM   #7
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Denis, we're not camping. We're fulltiming, and 'net access is important to us.
Ahhh, that's different. Full timing... lucky you.

A separate USB stick WiFi adapter, strategically positioned, on a long cord should help then.

Good luck.
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Old 04-13-2015, 09:48 PM   #8
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Please see my post about a Wi-Fi to WAN router made for motor homes, campers and long haul trucks.


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Old 04-14-2015, 05:59 AM   #9
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We do not use our bat wing antenna so I took it off and mounted our Wilson cell booster to the tubing that raises/lowers and turns. It boosts our cell signal for our wifi. We fulltime so when we get to a new park......just raise the arm like you would with the bat wing and are able to turn to get the best signal. I hooked it to the coax already up there which then hooks up to the inside antenna for the Wilson Booster .
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Old 04-14-2015, 07:24 AM   #10
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This is a terrific fix for getting access to free WiFi from a mile or so away.

1. 100 Cat6 Ethernet Cable

2. RiteAV Cat5e Network Ethernet Cable Blue 6 ft.

3. Ubiquiti BULLET-M2-HP Outdoor 802.11b/g M2HP

4. Celluteq 2.4GHz 15dBi Outdoor Omni-directional Antenna for WiFi and Wireless Applications

5. NETGEAR WG602 54 Mbps 802.11g Wireless Access Point

Set up and configuration are also easy.

The full blog article is here:

Learn How You Can Have FREE Wi-Fi In Your Rig
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