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.

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Step 1: Purchase Usb Wifi

i used the belkin wireless G usb adapter. it comes with a base and some cable.

Step 2: Purchase Strainer

this one is an 8 inch strainer with a handle.

Step 3: Make Hole in Strainer

Step 4: To Get a Better Signal Push It in About Half Way!!!

Step 5: Connect to Friends

i am getting this signal from across a river.

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    176 Discussions


    1 year ago

    I opened up a Tenda USB wifi card that plugs in with no extension cable, drilled a 1/16th hole in the plastic cover, soldered a single speaker wire (about six feet long) to the tiny circuit board squiggly antenna, ran the wire through the hole and closed it again. Luckily my living room window faces an xfinity hotspot. From my desk by the window, with the wire taped to the top of the window, my signal strength went from one bar to the max. If anyone know the frequencies for xfinity wifi signals I could probably trim the antenna length to get even better reception.


    3 years ago

    But uh, the antenna in a dongle like that tends to be essentially a coil printed on the PCB. Meanwhile, the shield of the USB connector that is basically electrically tied to your strainer is usually tied to the system ground.
    Ever hear of a Faraday cage??


    4 years ago on Introduction

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


    6 years ago on Introduction

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


    244 Jake

    7 years ago on Introduction

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

    Big Jake


    11 years ago on Introduction

    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 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 it good to recieve wireless AP better??? (if it can good...i wasted money buying a useless 25ft copper wire....LOL)

    5 replies

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    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.


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    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)


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    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.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    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!


    10 years ago on Step 5

    Hi Just wondering could this work with a nintendo ds wifi to improve it? please email me or post the answer here at cheers henry!

    2 replies

    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.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    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

    1 reply

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    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.

    1 reply
    n3glveveryones a chump

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    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?