WiFi connection in a caravan

  GMSustech 18:12 25 Jul 2008

An increasing amount of caravan (touring) parks are providing wifi access. Both of the parks I have visited this year have had it.
Both times I have had a better service when outside the caravan than inside. I am thinking sitting in a tin box does nothing for the signal.
Can any one suggest a solution to using my laptop inside? Can I use an access point and connect to the laptop using ethernet? I would need an external aerial to do that, what would I need for that?

  MAJ 18:38 25 Jul 2008

If the wireless signal isn't penetrating the caravans shell very well, then I see little point in connecting to an access point via an ethernet cable, the access point would have to be outside the caravan. Why not buy a USB wireless adapter (dongle), connect it to the laptop using a USB cable and hang it out the window.

  GMSustech 18:51 25 Jul 2008

I was thinking of an external aerial, that could be mounted outside the caravan. Hanging a dongle outside may be a short term solution, but given this country's weather, it would end up getting wet.

  Strawballs 23:06 25 Jul 2008
  Forum Editor 23:14 25 Jul 2008
  dms_05 10:50 26 Jul 2008

Or another source click here

I have used various methods when in our motorhome. The best is an external antenna. In many cases an omni-directional antenna is easiest but if you know the direction to the WiFi source then a directional antenna will give better results.

I have used an omni-directional antenna in Portugal, Spain, France and the UK. And a directional one over 0.5km.

Remember the 2.4Ghz signal is degraded very quickly and you should use as short a coaxial connection as possible made from the best quality cable. TV and satellite coax isn't ideal!

Finally you will need the correct connection on the antenna to connect to your WiFi card. That might be a problem as most laptops have either intermal mini-pci cards or external USB cards and these don't have readily usable connectors. Your best bet would be to find a PCMCIA/Express Card card with an antenna connection - they are rare but available.

The other alternative is to use a 3G dongle and connect via a mobile phone network. Nowadays it's cheap enough, the '3' network will sell you a 28 day card for £10 and the dongle is £49. Then you can connect anytime anywhere (network allowing).

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