WiFi Connectivity On-Board - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 62 Old 02-07-2014 Thread Starter
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WiFi Connectivity On-Board

New to living aboard and looking into WiFi connectivity. Our marina has Beacon WiFi but, apparently, our slip is too far away from the server/transmitter to pick up their WiFi signal. By way of an experiment we signed up for a 24 hour-1 day plan just to see if it would work and couldn't connect from the boat. Thinking about one of their antennas IOT extend the range but don't know it that will work either. Hate to invest the $ and have it not work.

BL: Does anyone have any experience with Beacon WiFi's antennas and their effectiveness (or have any other experience with getting WiFi onto their boats?

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post #2 of 62 Old 02-07-2014
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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

On board we mainly connect via our mobile phone plans which give us two gig a month free. I'm hard pressed to download more than that so it works well for us.

Of course if we were out of Australia that would not be a viable option.

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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

We were looking to using something like NETFLIX to watch a little TV - one source told me that a 'rule of thumb' was one GB per hour of viewing. Two one hour TV shows (PER MONTH) would bust 2GB in no time I'm afraid.

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post #4 of 62 Old 02-07-2014
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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

We have a Ubiquiti Bullet II wifi booster and are extremely happy with it. We pick up signals more than a mile away. The Bullet is run to a regular home router that is set up as a bridge allowing wireless access from any place on the boat. The basic setup is a 15 dbi antenna connected to the bullet, a cat 5 cable from the bullet to a poe injector, the poe is connected to the home router and to a dc source.
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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

dave, A wifi extender will pull in signals from miles away if it is the right antenna and set up properly. Any limited paid wifi plan is going to eat you alive streaming videos. There are pre-made extender systems for a few hundred to $500.00. Or you can buy the pieces and put them together yourself for under a couple of hundred dollars. Have a look at the progress of our wifi set up, The Trawler Beach House: WiFi . We have added Verizon Mifi to the mix but only use it on a limited basis because of the data limits. Even our basic unit that we used early on will make a major improvement. Hope this helps. Chuck

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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

Island time wifi sells all of the components you would need in one simple package at a reasonable price. They also come with easy to understand instructions Marine WiFi Systems

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post #7 of 62 Old 02-07-2014
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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

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Originally Posted by dave6330 View Post
We were looking to using something like NETFLIX to watch a little TV - one source told me that a 'rule of thumb' was one GB per hour of viewing. Two one hour TV shows (PER MONTH) would bust 2GB in no time I'm afraid.
good point but I've not the urge to watch TV on board ... maybe catch up with DVDs would be simpler.

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post #8 of 62 Old 02-07-2014
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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

We use "the Bullet" available from Islandtime PC. I've used it on Beacon networks and it has increased our ability to connect considerably. Not only with Beacon but other wifi networks we would not be able to connect without some sort of booster aeriel and the Bullet is one of the best. I connect to a router so we can have more than one computer connected to the same account.
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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

dave6330;

Check yer guigs there. Mebbe run15 min. just ta see.I got nearer 100 meg/hr on my Verizon acct using netflix.

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paul

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post #10 of 62 Old 02-07-2014
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Re: WiFi Connectivity On-Board

Just to clear up some things that have already been said. The ubiquity bullet II hp is what you will need it can be configured in several different ways but you will be using the bridge option in the setup utility. what you will call it is a high powered bridge. You will connect your bridge to the Beacon wifi network and it will deliver internet access to an onboard router. you will connect the bridge to the internet port on the onboard router. at this point you will be able to log in to your paid account at Beacon and then surf the internet through your onboard network. Your bridge will be mounted somewhere up in the rigging where it will have good line of sight to the access point.

With this setup you will be able to connect to beacon with excellent signal strength. Depending on how many people are using beacons bandwidth you usually can do Netflix. suggest you have someone help you set things up.

oh yea you will also need an antenna for the bullet. Suggest something like a 9 db Omni.

My point is that it will work if setup right. but there will be a learning curve.

good luck
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