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Old 07-30-2017, 03:48 PM   #1
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Wifi Booster Questions

We are finalizing the options on our 17B. Thanks go out to all here and our local friend for help with decision-making.

I think the only question remaining now concerns the wifi booster.

First, I know that signals in RV camp grounds depend on some factors including signal origin distance, how many active other users, and interfering objects. From reading comments on the Escape forums I conclude that a wifi booster will help often enough to make it worthwhile. Comments on this conclusion will be appreciated.

Am I correct that the components of a wifi booster system are (a) outside antenna, (b) cable between outside antenna and (c) inside router/hotspot. I assume the cable linking the outside antenna and the inside router should be Cat5. I assume for any portion of the run exposed to weather the Cat5 should be rated for that use.

I liked the idea of using some sort of home-made mast (PVC, etc.) or a ham radio telescoping unit. I am handy, including welding, so I plan to make a mast bracket and attach it to the rear bumper or wishbone. I believe from what I have read here, is likely to give better performance than a roof mounted antenna. Comments on this belief?

So if I proceed with a DIY mast, I only need to figure out (a) how to get the Cat5 through the hull of the trailer and (b) where it should terminate inside. Correct?

My wife and I are heading over to Escape in a couple of days to deliver some fabric and a Formica sample so I think I can look over the unit again and decide where the Cat5 should terminate inside. (I donít know if Escape terminates Cat5 for customers. I can do Cat5 terminal ends, male/female, so all I would need is enough length to make the receptacle, if they donít do that sort of thing.)

I would really like some thoughts on how to get the Cat5 through the trailer hull. I donít know that much about this type of cable routing. Are there external, weather proof Cat5 jacks? There must be.

Thanks in advance for comments and suggestions.
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Old 07-30-2017, 03:59 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Todtman View Post
We are finalizing the options on our 17B. Thanks go out to all here and our local friend for help with decision-making.

I think the only question remaining now concerns the wifi booster.

First, I know that signals in RV camp grounds depend on some factors including signal origin distance, how many active other users, and interfering objects. From reading comments on the Escape forums I conclude that a wifi booster will help often enough to make it worthwhile. Comments on this conclusion will be appreciated.

Am I correct that the components of a wifi booster system are (a) outside antenna, (b) cable between outside antenna and (c) inside router/hotspot. I assume the cable linking the outside antenna and the inside router should be Cat5. I assume for any portion of the run exposed to weather the Cat5 should be rated for that use.

I liked the idea of using some sort of home-made mast (PVC, etc.) or a ham radio telescoping unit. I am handy, including welding, so I plan to make a mast bracket and attach it to the rear bumper or wishbone. I believe from what I have read here, is likely to give better performance than a roof mounted antenna. Comments on this belief?

So if I proceed with a DIY mast, I only need to figure out (a) how to get the Cat5 through the hull of the trailer and (b) where it should terminate inside. Correct?

My wife and I are heading over to Escape in a couple of days to deliver some fabric and a Formica sample so I think I can look over the unit again and decide where the Cat5 should terminate inside. (I donít know if Escape terminates Cat5 for customers. I can do Cat5 terminal ends, male/female, so all I would need is enough length to make the receptacle, if they donít do that sort of thing.)

I would really like some thoughts on how to get the Cat5 through the trailer hull. I donít know that much about this type of cable routing. Are there external, weather proof Cat5 jacks? There must be.

Thanks in advance for comments and suggestions.
We have the removable power cord but we had Escape put in an electrical hatch near it (same type as for the fixed power cord). We will use it for a portable solar panel, wifi booster or cell booster.
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Old 07-30-2017, 04:08 PM   #3
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Here is what Jefa Tech recommended and Escape is installing for us: https://www.jefatech.com/collections...oducts/rj45-bh
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Old 07-30-2017, 04:17 PM   #4
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While I didn't have Escape install it, this is the feedthrough I'm using.

On edit - Linda or Ray is using the same one I'm using. You do have to have the nerve to drill a 1" hole in the trailer if you do it yourself!

Since I rarely use campground WiFi, I designed the system to be completely removable. The mount is a Flagpole bracket from Lowe's, one of their 4' - 8' paint roller handles, the above feedthrough, a Ubiquiti NanoStation M2, a Ubiquiti airGateway-LR airMAX Wireless Access Point, and since the Wireless Access Point is 120V powered, a TYcon Power TP-DCDC-1224 Power Over Ethernet power supply to run directly on 12V.

The 12v POE supply plugs directly into the air Gateway, but since it doesn't snap in place like the Ubiquiti 120V supply, you need to use a rubber band to keep it plugged to the air Gateway. I've put it together here at home & everything works.

For a YouTube video of how to set up the system, check this "Outside Our Bubble" post (scroll to the bottom for the video).
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Old 07-30-2017, 04:18 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Ljswany View Post
Here is what Jefa Tech recommended and Escape is installing for us: https://www.jefatech.com/collections...oducts/rj45-bh
I don't quite follow. What are you going to use the RJ45 for? And when you say Escape is installing it, are they just installing the connector or terminating some CAT5 or CAT6 behind it?
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Old 07-30-2017, 04:19 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Ljswany View Post
Here is what Jefa Tech recommended and Escape is installing for us: https://www.jefatech.com/collections...oducts/rj45-bh
That is what I am installing in a cable entry hatch for connecting the antenna.
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Old 07-30-2017, 04:42 PM   #7
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I don't quite follow. What are you going to use the RJ45 for? And when you say Escape is installing it, are they just installing the connector or terminating some CAT5 or CAT6 behind it?
The Ubiquiti NanoStation is not a USB based WiFi amplifier, but a complete WiFi Radio. It is powered by the Ethernet cable. Check the link in my post to Outside Our Bubble for an explanation of the system.
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Old 07-30-2017, 04:44 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
The Ubiquiti NanoStation is not a USB based WiFi amplifier, but a complete WiFi Radio. It outputs over ethernet & is powered by the Ethernet cable. Check the link in my post to Outside Our Bubble for an explanation of the system.
Ah, thanks for the explanation.
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Old 07-30-2017, 05:16 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
The Ubiquiti Nano Station is not a USB based WiFi amplifier, but a complete WiFi Radio. It is powered by the Ethernet cable. Check the link in my post to Outside Our Bubble for an explanation of the system.

And mine (NSM2) has successfully locked onto WiFi that the giant rig next to me with his ( he said ) $500+ WiFi booster could not do.
I did have to lie though and tell him mine only allowed one hook up. I did not want him streaming video since he mentioned that's why he wanted to use theirs instead of his Jetpack.
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Old 07-30-2017, 05:24 PM   #10
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David,
Did you get the roof mounted solar panel option for your trailer? If it were me, I think I would mount my antenna somewhere on the front of the trailer. I say that without seeing your antenna plans because of concerns due to shading your solar panels with the antenna apparatus. It doesn't take much shading to reduce the efficiently of your solar output. Some antennas are multi legged wire forms and may not produce much shading but perhaps the pole could.

Just a thought to complicate your installation .... sorry

Tom

An interesting test would be to hook up a digital voltmeter to the output of your panel on a sunny day.... then hold up a broom handle and create a shade crossing over the panel. What happened? Please report.
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