What's everyone using for wifi?

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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby Robert » Mon Dec 15, 2008 7:38 pm

Sorry, we did kinda divert the thread from it's original question.

OK, I don't think an omni-directional antenna will work for you so how about mounting the directional antenna you tried on the dock so it's fixed and running the cable to the boat. That kind of assumes you also have a good line of sight to the transmitter though.
Last edited by Robert on Mon Dec 15, 2008 7:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby THATBOATGUY » Mon Dec 15, 2008 7:42 pm

Hey,

Are you trying from down in the cabin? Try this. On a nice day put the usb adapter on an extension cord and put it up outside as high as you can get it. You should be able to go 10 feet of USB extension before you notice line lose. You can go up to something like 30 with active extension cords.

George
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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby THATBOATGUY » Mon Dec 15, 2008 7:44 pm

Hey Robert,

Actually I'm leaning very heavily towards a system like Geoff's. He's got a leg up on it having been out there. I've used my flat panel out on the water before and it does not do well because as soon as the boat moves on the mooring the panel is not pointing right any more. It works pretty good in the slip.

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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby Lola » Tue Dec 16, 2008 9:25 am

Hi George

Not knowing much on this topic...allow me to ask...does this device work at sea...do they make something to use at sea, so as can use computer?

I read where people use fax also.

Still learning on this site and when the time comes will ask for help where needed.

Thank you,

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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby THATBOATGUY » Tue Dec 16, 2008 9:43 am

Hi Lola,

There is a book titled "Communications at Sea" that I can highly recommend. Things change rapidly. There are various ways to achieve various levels of success at accessing the internet while at sea. Some involve hi freq radios bouncing beams from the ionosphere like Geoff does to send email and receive weather fax, some utilize satellites in one way or another, all are expensive and somewhat complicated. But to answer your question, no, wifi does not work more than a mile or so reliably and a few miles pushing the limits. One cruising friend once managed to get off an email from 5 miles off the coast of Florida to report a whale sighting... but it was just a fluke.

Because things happen quickly in the field of telecommunications we will not make a decision on what com gear will go on Marqueas until we actually need it. Once we start crossing big oceans I suspect that we will have a sat phone. We have an older ham radio that I have not decided on installing or ebaying yet.

Glad you made it here and got all signed in good. I'll be glad to help in any way so if you have questions, try utilizing the help we have here first, then email me or PM me if you have any questions here. Your questions will help us build a stronger help system so they are appreciated rather than tolerated... ask away!

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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby Ryley » Tue Dec 16, 2008 10:07 am

There's an article in either the latest or the next to latest Ocean Navigator on building a long-distance wifi antenna. Looked like a decent system and allowed for a pretty extended range. When I was still using wifi at Constitution marina, I bought a fairly cheap unidirectional usb unit that would pick up the local healthcare provider and the hotel as well as the marina.

I know the cell cards aren't exactly cheap, though the prices have come down a bit. We've exclusively switched to a Verizon card, and it has been great. For one thing, you don't have to worry about whether or not a marina has wifi. Also, you can generally keep a signal out to around 10 miles off shore (proven on a trip to Maine two summers ago), and if you're doing coastal cruising, you don't get dropped as you leave one wifi area to go into another. The newer Rev A cards provide a pretty decent return and have dsl upload and download speeds. Not everyone's cup of tea, but if you use weather routing software you can get your new gribs on the fly.
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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby THATBOATGUY » Tue Dec 16, 2008 11:33 am

Here is a cantenna I built. It worked pretty good. I would love to have more details about the ocean navigator article. I'll go up to the library and have a look.

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Wifi antenna on the chip (cheap?)

Postby Michel » Tue Dec 16, 2008 6:00 pm

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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby GeoffSchultz » Tue Dec 16, 2008 6:43 pm

The problem with these directional antennas is that they don't work at anchor. You need an omni-directional antenna.

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Re: What's everyone useing for wifi?

Postby THATBOATGUY » Tue Dec 16, 2008 9:12 pm

Hey Geoff,

Between what you posted here and what we got from engenious support we finally got the dang thing to work. It is a clunky process to say the least.

Completely agree about the need for an omni at anchor or mooring. I'll keep the directional gear in the arsenal for times when the boat is held fast.

Michel,

I think I have to build one of those yagi's now just for fun... alas the list of fun projects grows ever longer. I have a cannon that needs to have a carriage built for it in time to salute the new year. :)

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