Outdoor wireless trouble

Unanswered Question
Mar 11th, 2008

have a wireless network setup for a customer. It is an outdoor wireless setup. The area consists of 4 mobile homes arainged in a square formation. There are two ap's installed diagnally from each other, one on channel 1 and the other on channel 11. Each is using one 5.2dBi omni antenna mounted 10' high. There is a courtyard in the middle with a table. At the table which is about 20' from either antenna the best I can get is 18Mb with fair quality (17dB SNR).

The ground was some sort of crushed rock, 6" deep and quite wet. The ground was saturated.

Any idea why signal was so bad at such a close ranged? Could the saturated ground be soaking up the signal?

I ran Airmagnet, both spectrum analyzer and WLAN ananlyzer and found no sources of interference and no obvious trouble with the connection.


I have this problem too.
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Scott Fella Wed, 03/12/2008 - 19:41

That can't be right. What you should do is verify that the antenna is connected securly on the primary side and that you have set the TX and RX to the correct side. Is there any cable that was added to the antennas or are you using the lenght that came with the antenna?

srosenthal Thu, 03/13/2008 - 05:02

I did verify that both TX and RX on the right side. There is a 20' low loss cable connected. However, I placed another AP on top of the mounting enclosure using the same antenna, a new antenna, the 2dBi rubber duck antenna and even a Yagi antenna pointed at the table and still could not get 54M.

So I know it was not the AP, the antenna or the cable.


Scott Fella Thu, 03/13/2008 - 05:30

Have you tried to connect an antenna to the ap itself and get readings. What type of low-loss cables are you using and did you get it pre-made or did you crimp the end yourself?

srosenthal Thu, 03/13/2008 - 05:54

yep, tried that to. Right next to the ap I get 54M, walk away about 10' and it starts dropping. The cable is Cisco low loss.


Scott Fella Thu, 03/13/2008 - 17:11

I don't know what else it can be. I have been doing installs for outdoor use and don't have any issues, even with grass and mulch. Take one of the ap's and move it to a different location (office, home) to see if the radio is performing as it should. If it does, then you might be right about the surrounding environment.

bcolvin Thu, 03/13/2008 - 19:49

Okay this may seriously damage my credbility if it works.

Try hanging the antenna inverted.

the result should look like a sheppards crook.

I am assuming the AP, cable and antennas have been tested at another location.


srosenthal Fri, 03/14/2008 - 04:55

Believe it or not, I actually did that and no improvement.

I know that the AP and antenna are good and did use them in another location.


Scott Fella Fri, 03/14/2008 - 05:01

That doesn't seem right. Outdoor, you should get good range at least 100'. have you tried a different cient just to make sure.

philoclyde Fri, 03/14/2008 - 09:06

Have you tested the cable with a volt meter? Set the volt meter to Ohms and test the center pin on each end, the outer connector on each end, and then the center pin and connector. Do you have a lightning arrestor installed? Make sure that the ground is good. I have had a bad ground mess me up a time or two. Are there any power lines nearby that could be interfering?

Good luck

srosenthal Fri, 03/14/2008 - 09:47

I did not test the cable with a meter, however I got the same results with an AP and a directly connected antenna.



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