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Workshop internet

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Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Wed Dec 02, 2015 9:05 pm

Hi All, As you know im in the process of sorting my workshop. Now obviously internet is reasonably crucial these days.
I can get an EE Osprey which will provide 4G internet and is like a mini router but they're expensive and from reviews not all that good..

So the only way i'm going to do this (as I cannot get a phone line) is WIFI. I originally looked at transmiting long-distance wifi from my home 2 miles away but I don't have line of sight and there are some schools, colleges and a brick bypass in the way! :zx:

However, 1/4mile away is Argos and B&Q etc on a business park, All of which have free wifi hotspots. I have line of sight with those if I mounted the aerial on my chimney due to the way victorian houses were built so my antenna would be overlooking their back gardens all the way to Argos.

So obviously some form of long range WIFI Receiver is needed. Has anyone ever used any long range antennas?


The current idea in mind seems to be this antenna mounted on a pole on my chimney: http://www.broadbandbuyer.co.uk/product ... -ant2424b/

Followed by this USB dongle allowing me to connect the antenna! http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/TP-Link-TL-WN ... SwPhdVDERJ

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Lloyd » Wed Dec 02, 2015 11:25 pm

I can say, don't buy the cheap £12 wifi yagi antenna's off ebay, they are useless! I fitted one to my workshop, pointed it in the general direction of the BT Homehub in our house, and got everyone elses wifi router's except ours!! I put one of the little 2db wifi antenna's normally supplied with wifi pcie cards in it's place outside, and got better reception. It was still poo, so I ended up making a wifi range extender and putting it upstairs in my bedroom window, which has worked well for the last year or so. I used a redundant homehub and a wifi to ethernet bridge thing that I bought in error thinking it was a range extender!

The one thing that will knacker up your signal is other people's wifi routers, when they start using them in the evening you will suddenly have your signal dropping out, that always happened to me here.

Regards,
Lloyd.

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Terrykc » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:40 am

Jamie, Google 'tin can wifi antenna' or just cantenna for a DIY approach to a highly directional antenna.

This guy http://www.lincomatic.com/wireless/homebrewant.html used three cans for a very high gain antenna - scroll down to the second last section "Bazooka Cantenna" for the details.

It looks pretty impressive and might be just what you need.

Image

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Thu Dec 10, 2015 7:37 pm

Righteo' my aerial arrived today (3ft long and made of STEEL!) i'm just waiting on the dongle and I can then get started! Should be interesting... If I had line of sight with my house I would of course use my own WIFI but I don't so Argos' WIFI Hotspot it is...

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Sun Dec 13, 2015 5:11 pm

Well, after some exploring using my aerial I wasn't able to find the O2 Hotspot I wanted. I did however pick up the whole of Great Yarmouths WIFI :bba

I found one "free wifi" which belonged to a gym nearby, but lost it after I moved the aerial! :zx: It's amazing how directional the aerial is the slightest movement changes everything. I am now thinking it's too high as most peoples routers aren't 20ft up in the air. It has an angle bracket so i'll have a play tomorrow with the angling and see if I can pick up something..

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Terrykc » Sun Dec 13, 2015 8:30 pm

Jamie wrote:... It's amazing how directional the aerial is the slightest movement changes everything ...
I'd be surprised if you said anything else!

Does it have sights?

If not, clamp something near each end - short lengths of stiff wire, perhaps - making sure that they exactly in line.  Then you might have more success with O2.

This is the 1:10,000 OS map which shows individual buildings: http://streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=652376&Y=305457&A=Y&Z=106

Can you work out the precise locations of your workshop and the O2 hub?

If so, print the map and measure the bearing carefully - then, correcting to make allowance for magnetic north (Magnetic north was estimated to be 3 deg 16 min west of OS grid north in Gorleston in July 2015) - arm yourself with a compass and try again!

If you can get the bearing right you can then experiment with the vertical angle.

Good luck!

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Sun Dec 13, 2015 9:40 pm

I don't actually know where O2's hub is! I couldn't see it so expect it is probably hidden from view...

Iwonder if changing the antenna from vertical to horizontal polarity would make a difference, at the detriment of some gain it would increase the area it receives?
I think compass measurements may be a bit beyond me!

Image
You can see here it shouldn't in theory be too hard, Although I know WIFI doesn't like buildings... Blue cross is my workshop other blue cross is Argos. Alternative WIFI is a local gym denoted by a red cross.. Elevation of my workshop aerial is about 20ft which makes me think obviously most peoples wifi routers are not 20ft in the air!

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Terrykc » Mon Dec 14, 2015 12:12 pm

Jamie wrote:I think compass measurements may be a bit beyond me!
Not to worry - the beauty of having a very accurate map with both ends of the link clearly identifiable is that you can do it by eye!

Draw straight lines between your workshop and the two possible sites.

For Argos, point the antenna at - or very slightly to the left of the rear left hand corner of the building on the NW corner of the Stafford Road/Gordon Road junction.

For the Gym, assuming you can 'see' over the school opposite, point your antenna to the left of the building immediately opposite and aim half way along the visible portion of the centre building.

As you have no idea of the polarisation of the signals you are trying to receive, experimenting with the polarisation would be a good idea but bear in mind that the correct choice could be at any angle!

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Mon Dec 14, 2015 2:20 pm

Hi, After having tried every single angle and position I gave in, Not being able to receive the GYM, O2 or Great Yarmouth College. It's a victorian housing estate so walls are thick and houses are plentiful I think the gym wifi just came through the other day by luck probably just reflecting off a wall...

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by jamesperrett » Mon Dec 14, 2015 5:22 pm

There's a possibility that the access point owner has deliberately limited the maximum range to prevent access to their network from people outside the building. I've seen this option on certain more industrial access points that I've used.

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Mon Dec 14, 2015 5:44 pm

jamesperrett wrote:There's a possibility that the access point owner has deliberately limited the maximum range to prevent access to their network from people outside the building. I've seen this option on certain more industrial access points that I've used.


Hi James, Yes that is possible It's a shame but heyho! I'm still ademant im not paying for a 4G Router contract!

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Mon Dec 14, 2015 6:28 pm

Another thing which comes to mind, Is my house is 15m above sea level and by the time the aerial is on the lower roof it'll be a bit more... My house "looks down" onto the workshop, But via a housing estate and a bypass and a large college building. I wonder if I could send my own house wifi to the workshop? Or would there be far too much in the way for 2.4GHz?

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Mark Hennessy » Mon Dec 14, 2015 10:35 pm

The trouble is, there's too much on 2.4GHz these days. When I first got it - 6 or 7 years back - my wi-fi reliably went from the front of the house to the bottom of the garden with no special aerials. And that was using a laptop that is relatively "deaf" compared to newer devices.

But with no changes to my setup, this range gradually eroded to the point that I couldn't get wi-fi in several rooms of the house, let alone the garden. Didn't really bother me, but I bought the wife a tablet, and suddenly wi-fi became upgraded in her mind from "that geeky thing I don't understand" to "essential service" :bba

I tried a couple of different routers, but they were no better than my original. I still have and use it, and believe that it is performing the same as it did when new.

What has changed, however, is the proliferation of wi-fi networks around here. Back then, there was a total of about 6 that I could pick up. Now, there's more like 30 or 40!

To fix the problem, I bought a dedicated WAP and installed it in the most central part of the house. That made a decent difference, and so far, I haven't had to lie about where in the world it's based to get the last few dB from it...

There's every chance your experiments would have worked a few years ago, but I'm not really surprised that you're having trouble now. A friend of mine got about 5 miles line-of-sight with a high gain antenna when wi-fi was new and rare. No chance today, sadly.

How about tethering your mobile - is that an option with your device?

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Mon Dec 14, 2015 10:53 pm

It is however I rack up 5GB a month as it is, and that's my limit so don't fancy going over it.

I'm going to ask a neighbour to my workshop nicely if I can have her router details.. If all else fails I could get a phone line and broadband installed or a 4G EE Osprey Router (both of which are more or less the same price! Landline in theory being more reliable)

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Herald1360 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 11:47 pm

You might get a signal from home with a high gain antenna at both ends of the link pointing at each other. The directional nature should keep out off beam clutter too.

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Tue Dec 15, 2015 8:00 am

Hi Chris,
I did consider it as my workshop is at sea level while my house is on a hill 15m above sea level. However even with the height there are still numerous large industrial buildings and various schools and colleges in the way so it wouldn't work sadly

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by CTV » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:27 pm

In response to a reported post I have made the necessary amendments to two posts. Those involved know what has been removed and why. This negates closing the thread or having to move it to the lounge.

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:33 pm

I have sold my aerial to a local mate of mine for £40, and instead purchased Fuel Broadband which is £17 a month (inclusive of Line Rental) and includes free install of a new phone line and free evening and weekend calls. It's also unlimited. I'm hardly expecting a fast speed from the old copper cables but it's better than nothing! Let's hope they support Pulse Dialing...

 
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Re: Workshop internet

Post by Jamie » Thu Dec 17, 2015 6:29 pm

Has anyone had experience with Fuel Broadband? (Formerly Primus) They seem to have bad reviews, but no more than anyone else... Will be interesting going back to ADSL though where im expected to get a speed of around 4meg... as my speed back at home is 40meg


A neighbour did offer me access to his wifi, but I just could not receive it with my antenna so I gave up lol


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