Rural wifi extension (again)

Keep in mind that you may also need a heated enclosure for the repeater. Most consumer gear is only rated to between 32-40 degrees at the low end. Condensation is also a concern.

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Clark W. Griswold, Jr.
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I appreciate all the replies I received to my previous question in the thread 'rural wifi extension' which seems to have rolled off the news server by now. Other things came up to delay the project but now I have some more information on the location.

There are three significant trees blocking line of sight between the house and the studio where we want to extend broadband. The satellite router sits in the upstairs office. This is where we want to take the wifi from.

The distance is about 300ft or 100m.

I'm not at the location right now, so I am going to show them the terraserver image and ask if they can tell me where the trees are.

I will post back here the results should we decide to go ahead.

Oh, and if we use an extender or access point outside on a post (as I've seen) it will have to be strong enough that the cows won't knock it over. ;-)


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Steve Knoblock (Usenet News Ac

Cows. O_o Now *that's* a hazard most network techs don't encounter very often. Rats, roaches, and the occaisional Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal, yes, but not steak-on-the-hoof (or milk-, if they're dairy cows). Of course, since I live in the sticks and my father is an apiarist, I have to worry about bee swarms. But so far it hasn't been a problem, yet. ("Hey, Dad? Can you get that swarm out of my junction box, please? The honey is clogging my ethernet ports....")

Heck, if you can run power out to the repeater, you almost might as well run ethernet. Or HomePNA. Hmm... if the box is well insulated, the waste heat from an ordinary WAP/Bridge *might* be enough to keep it from reaching dangerous lows, but it's iffy. And I suspect snow will block a Wifi signal very handily, so you'll need it to sit above the local drift level. Hm. Robert Cringley (don't have the URL handy, but he has his own website, and does a show on PBS) has an article on his site about the time he made a

*passive* relay, out of two homemade Yagi cantennae and a short piece of coax. If you can Google up his article, it might have some ideas worth using. The more robust, but more expensive, option would be to get some 900MHz gear that will penetrate the foliage and live with the reduced data rate (which will probably still exceed your internet connection).
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That may work in more temperate areas of the country , but winter nights get very cold in the plains of Nebraska or North Dakota... While a Nema box will certainly provide good direct water(rain) and dust protection, I suspect that the heat generated by an AP using a wall wart power cube external to an uninsulated box won't be sufficient to keep the AP above zero degrees. :)

Now, it's possible the gear will continue to work at those temps. But mid-winter repairs in the dead of night are not high on my list of favorite things to do. :)

Reply to
Clark W. Griswold, Jr.

I use standard indoor type AP's in Nema 3R boxes (sealed with silicone) and have found I can eliminate condensation simply by installing a fan inside to keep the air circulating.. Standard old $20 120VAC fan from radio shack.

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On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 20:08:22 -0800, Clark W. Griswold, Jr. wrote (in article ):

What type of heater would you use, if you had to design something for operation in low temps?


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We put a AP operating in repeater mode inside an unheated feedlot shed, with an antenna on the roof in North Dakota a couple of years ago. Wrapped the box with automatic heattape (same stuff used to keep water pipes from freezing and ice dams from forming on roofs). So far, no problems at all.

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