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Old 08-13-2014, 07:31 PM   #1
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DIY WiFi Antenna Mount

I've never been happy with the mounting options for my Bullet M2 + EnGenius EAG-2408 antenna. Part of the problem is that the EnGenius antenna, which is inexpensive, and works very well, has an aluminum base.

I've finally come up with a solution that I like, so I thought I'd pass it on. All of the used parts came to $35 -- bought at a marine surplus store.

It turns out that a 1" bimini jaw slide will fit around the antenna base with just enough of a gap that I can insulate the aluminum from the stainless with a bit of electrical tape to prevent electrolysis. If you're more worried about grounding than corrosion, you can skip the tape.

As you can see from the pictures, I ground out the insides of the slide to get a better fit to the extender. A bit of welding, and a bit of buffing, and I'm pleased with the result. Note that the slider screw doesn't do anything, I just left it in. I also put a plastic plug at the top of the extender, mostly for looks; the extender will drain through the coax hole in the antenna base. I thought about welding a cap, but my TIG welding skills aren't great, and I thought I'd better stop while I'm ahead.
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Old 08-13-2014, 09:13 PM   #2
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Looks great. I did something similar. Welded a flat stainless plate with a hole and used the threaded portioned of the bullit. But I own a fab shop
So I can do anything. I really like yours for the ingenuity of it.

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Old 08-13-2014, 09:28 PM   #3
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Nice job, Bob. A couple of weeks ago I bought a 15 lb. box of such hardware at a yard sale for 1 dollar, which included three antenna bases and the rest of the hardware you're using.. I took the box over to a local marine thrift store and sold it for 30 bucks. Now I wish I would have kept it.
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Old 08-14-2014, 12:42 PM   #4
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Looks like a great solution, bobc. I placed my wifi antenna on my bimini frame to get it as high as possible for testing purposes and never really permanently mounted it. I guess I should follow your lead and make up a mount.

Thanks for adding one more item to my to-do list. Thanks alot!!
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:55 PM   #5
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I'd suggest making the Bullet waterproof - RescueTape around the O-ring area and antenna connection will probably help. The normal Bullet case will definitely allow water to get in especially if it's in weather up above everything else. I've gotten as much as 20 months out of mine unprotected but other people I know have gotten much less. I now keep mine in an enclosure that keeps all water out. You could probably rig up a PVC piece to cover the Bullet case from above.
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Old 08-14-2014, 06:36 PM   #6
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I put together a similar unit with an Alpha Tube U. It looked just like the Bullet. The Tube U connected directly to the computer with a USB cable. The USB cable connection in the base rusted in about a year due to humidity. Gold plated USB solved the problem. If your unit uses Cat 5 it may not have the same issue. I guess the Cat 5 connection could also use gold plated pins.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbevins View Post
Looks great. I did something similar. Welded a flat stainless plate with a hole and used the threaded portioned of the bullit. But I own a fab shop
So I can do anything. I really like yours for the ingenuity of it.

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Trawler
I was looking at doing something like that, but there didn't seem to be any extra threads. You got me thinking, I could have probably welded the Bullet top nut to the bottom side of some sheet metal with a large hole in it.

What I implemented was plan A, plan B involved building a stainless can to cover the radio. I bought a used rod holder when I picked up the other bits. The large stainless tube used in the rod holder looks long enough, and has a large enough diameter that it would have worked. Plan B was going to be a lot more work, because I would have had to build a cap for the can.
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