Picture of usb wifi antenna
this is the 1st. version of my usb wifi antenna. it has been inspired by:

i did not have immediate access to "Chinese parabolic cookware" however i will use one next time. instead,i used an eight inch strainer , without the strainer i do not get a signal in my house. this entire instructable has been uploaded via the strainer/usb antenna.

Step 1: Purchase usb wifi

Picture of purchase usb wifi
wifi dish 014.jpg
i used the belkin wireless G usb adapter. it comes with a base and some cable.
1-40 of 167Next »
seth15108 days ago
MuhammadT94 months ago

i thinks its not better idea.................................. dufer

Do you think this would work with a mini USB wifi adapter & a USB extension cord?

244 Jake3 years ago
Any comment for using the same idea for SMS - SIM chip modems. 3G stuff. I need a anttenna booster for mine.

Big Jake
TheITSystem3 years ago
That's just RAD!
hey guys...i have made an antenna using a mesh drainer about 8 inches, i added some pictures and i added a 10 ft usb extention with a linksys WUSB54GC connected to the center of the bowl...and i don't get ANY gain at all....is there a proper way to place the USB dongle...does it HAVE to have direct contact with the mesh...???? i added a 5onz baby bottle to prevent wetting when raining occurs... please help...have a couple of connections around i would like to improve the reception i also have copper wire....i heard that helps sending radio transmition...is it good to recieve wireless AP better??? (if it can good...i wasted money buying a useless 25ft copper wire....LOL)
Did you use a powered USB extender cable? There will be signal loss with a normal passive cable.
Hi Punk_88, There are a formula to calculate where you should put your dongle. It's a relationship between the curve of your dish ( of cause "mesh drainer" ). Try google "poor-man antenna" you will find it. good luck.
n3glv runganwt6 years ago
My favorite for lampshades and such (anything even remotely shiny) is just go out in the sun and aim the face of the dish toward the sun, measure the bright spot in the center with a stick. (In theory could also use a small flashlight bulb in a darkened room, while aiming the reflector at a light colored wall and peaking the pattern)
From how flat that dish looks, it would seem that it needs to be further away from the dish to be in the focal point.

The dish is not receiving the signal, its bouncing it into the built-in antenna
its making a uni-directional receiver a directional receiver. If your usb dongle is too deep, i.e. not in the focal point, the amplified signal is simply missing the receiver.
wombat7 (author)  simple_punk887 years ago
use "netstumbler" it will show you the signal strength on a graph. move the dongle in and out untill you get the best signal. good luck!
henyobarker6 years ago
Hi Just wondering could this work with a nintendo ds wifi to improve it? please email me or post the answer here at henryandtom@gmail.com cheers henry!
i got the same problem any ideas anyone??
I use a small reflector like this to extend the range of a portable USB wireless speaker and it did improve the distance, so yes, it will work.

BTW, it's only nice to get answers to your questions posted here rather than asking to have them emailed to you. Other people are probably having the same questions you are and would like to find the answers also.
bluemeanie5 years ago
I have a 14" metal bowl. Could I tape the wireless card to the bottom of the bowl and it boost the signal you think?y
It might help some, but it would do much better if it was held out 4 to 5 inches. I used a wok lid and the pringles can combined with a paint roller (like in the parabolic microphone hack). Works great. I tried it with the can alone and with the lid alone and then together and that's what works best for me. Im pulling in a signal from about 400 feet away.
I don't know a whole lot about wifi signals, but what i do know is that you can use paper to direct a signal. That being said, the bottle over the dongle could be blocking your signal. Wifi signals are easily directed and blocked.
Paper? I think you are referring to the articles where they used ALUMINUM BACKED paper. And while some plastics and rubbers can act "funny" at microwave signals (sometimes in a GOOD WAY) in this case, probably not. So, who's a chump?

A paper one would work great with an origami PC lol :P

http://www.freeantennas.com/projects/template/ You can make one of these out of paper, it works.
So if you have an AP in your house, snatch one of your cookie sheets and get out the tin snips =), just don't get caught by Mom :-( Actually you can make this reflector from just about anything. People have made good ones from Pringles cans, large tin cans, wire screen, aluminum sheet, and tin roofing material. Any flat metal surface or screen, even tinfoil taped to cardboard will work. You can build one of these in less than a half an hour using an old shoe box and a roll of tin foil.
I don't know about you, but does TIN SNIPS or TINFOIL TAPED TO CARDBOARD sound like plain paper?

Now, about that CHUMP comment?
haha whatever dude, i didnt even read that page, i assumed it was the same one i read another time but its not. U can make one out of paper and it does work just look it up instead of slamming me haha cause i don't care enough to look for you. (Maybe you don't know how to use google? It is simple just type in what your looking for, oh and spelling is important usually, ok also in case you didnt no google is www.google.com
wq23155635 years ago
Bardouv5 years ago
I have a large, mesh satellite dish that used to supply my T.V. It is probably 5-10 feet across. I was wondering if I could use this as a wifi antenna. My only main concern is that, even though it is motorized, it isn't very positionable. It is also cemented into the ground, not that I think I could move something that big. But do you think it would give me good enough signal to overcome the mobility issues?
bwpatton15 years ago
Hey! I have a wifi stick just like that, though I am contemplating what to do with it, because I used wired for everything and all the laptops are wireless Good Idea, I might try this, see just how far I can go from the router, hehe
Foaly76 years ago
does the little USB stand there only work for the wi-fi drive?
awkrin7 years ago
I have a one about like that. it's belkin f5d7051. I actually bought it when my family moved to Ireland, in the city center and I was almost sure I would find an unprotected network. well there were about 15 protected network (about 5 with wpa). I really wanted to get free internet, so I spent hours looking for a driver or something(I have legal internet now) to make it work with aircrack or something. any suggestions?
krimlon awkrin7 years ago
try looking for backtrack 3 linux it basically designed for hacking.
awkrin krimlon7 years ago
so it's a live cd... I can't download now cuz I downloaded a lot this month and I only have around 250 mb left, but thanks
I would boycott your ISP... Screw Caps. I have Bell, in Canada, and I have an "unlimited service (No caps)" but they throttle the hell out of Bittorrent protocol and I think I've heard that they actually do have caps (my memory is a little fuzzy), even on their "unlimited" service so I'm switching. Why pay for something you're not getting? Obviously I don't know what your ISP "plan" is but I suggest not supporting any ISP that limit's your download capacity unless that restriction was VERY clear when you bought their service. Actually, scratch that, why support it at all? If nobody pays ISPs with capped/throttled bandwidth, they'll stop doing it. Think about it. If say 20-30% stop paying for it now, they will raise the prices of their services due to loss in profit. When the prices are raised, people who were annoyed by the caps/throttling, but not enough to ditch them previously, will now likely be annoyed enough to ditch them. That would leave maybe about 60%-50% of their clients, that would simply be unacceptable to the ISP so they change their mind and get rid of their deconstructive restrictions or they get replaced by an ISP who doesn't have them. This would then, hopefully, teach other ISPs to immediately drop their restrictions. This plan would best be executed on a large ISP first, no use killing off small ISPs leaving only the influential ones and making the monopoly even worse. Yes, it's radical. Yes, it may not work as planned. BUT, yes, it can work. Anyways, I'm ranting, hopefully someone will see the sense in what I say.
Catchy isn't it. Advertise a service as unlimited and have a service and use agreement which restricts and limits you from using the service. I remember a time when Telus bundles a modem with a 3 year contract agreement to users which stated that they must use that modem. However the modem they provided failed to be equipped with UPNP or a firewall setup. It left the end-user not being able to have access to port forwarding thus being unable to run any program on the internet which required a active connection protocol using TCP or UDP ports. And Shaw cable systems packet filtering users against using FTP or Torrent protocols, and blocking access to known sites which encourage downloads. All in all, there is no contract that states what your rights are in using thier service and they can at any time restrict usage however they want without any recourse. With Telus is even worse if you got suckered into a long term contract with their limited "Unlimited" internet. No boycott will do anything. The telecommunication industry is monopolized and the providers know this. They don't need to be honest with their profit machine.
mahabad19726 years ago
HI can you use satellite dish to make this wifi antena
i went out got myself the linksys wusb600n usb wifi adapter(80$ but you could probably use a cheaper one),its two channels 2.4 ghz,and 5.4 ghz(also it uses mimo technology), i got myself a gold plated 35$ usb male/female extender,some tinfoil,uber duct tape,christmas tree leg stands from a tree stand,a cd-r stand/holder,some skateboard wheels(for weights because of heavy winds) and a plastic food dish, i went from a horrible 10% connection(rarely..RARELY connecting)to a 26% signal of wich i am having right at this moment.also i use this in a outdoors environment! for proof of this take a look at my site!!! because it will show you EXACTLY how i built this BEAST.

I made something similar using a styrofoam plate and aluminum foil nearly doubled my reception
octavian2346 years ago
I was thinking about building a huge dish for my usb wifi dongle. i was thinking about making it out of aluminim foil its goin to be 3 feet wide. to get the best signal how curved should i make it? I need to make the aluminum foil as unwrinkled as possible right? If i do build this will it make a dramatic increase in my signal strength
SPININSPUR6 years ago
try using a lampshade. I'm still workin on my model. take a shop at it. I'LL UPDATE WITH MY PROGRESS.
lugwrench6 years ago
Just picked up a SS bowl at the 99cent store 4 2 bucks. Wainting 2 see how it works.
catsnw6 years ago
how far do these work
I've been reading a LOT of this WiFi stuff here on our extraordinary Instructables.com and was wondering if anyone has tested the strainer method against the coffee can or pringles method and also against using an old directv satellite and such. Which one would give me the best reception? I'm guessing the satellite dish but I am new to this. TIA!
The "coffee can" style requires a driven element, so do yagi's (that's a chunk of wire to you and me) The 1/4 wave or better antenna on a usb dongle is a pattern on the pc board. So, we are relegated to the reflectors and such that are being discussed here. If one has a card with an antenna jack you can buy a "pigtail" and go down the horn (can) route, and get great results, also using a simple can (tuna can size) and a figure 8 shaped wire inside to "illuminate" a dish can be real hot setup. All of this is FAR more expensive and time consuming. (Yagi's are pretty easy, but again, more skill and those pesky , expensive parts.)
1-40 of 167Next »