How to Make a GSM Antenna

Written by adam quinn
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How to Make a GSM Antenna
Boost your cell phone's range with a homemade GSM antenna. (Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

If you live in an area with intermittent GSM cell phone coverage, and your phone has an external jack, an antenna may improve your reception. GSM is a mobile communications technology that converts voice conversation into digital data, and transmits this data between phones via cellular transmission towers. A homemade GSM antenna can boost the signal strength between your phone and distant cell towers.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Copper wire, 9-gauge with the insulation removed, 80mm long
  • Circuit board, blank, one-sided, copper-clad, 200mm square
  • N-type connector, male, screw-on with solder tab
  • Pigtail cable, low-loss, with female N-type connector and GSM antenna connector
  • Soldering iron and solder
  • Power drill with various bits
  • Metric ruler
  • Pencil
  • Metal file
  • Wire-cutting tool

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Instructions

  1. 1

    File an end of the copper wire until it fits snugly in the N connector solder tab. Solder the wire to the N connector.

  2. 2

    Measure and mark 77.5mm from the base of the N connector solder tab to the tip of the wire. Cut the wire a few millimetres longer, and then file the wire down to the marked length.

  3. 3

    Find the centre of the circuit board by drawing diagonals from the corners, on the bottom side of the board. Drill a small hole in the centre of the board. Gradually widen the hole with larger bits until the N connector fits. Mount the N connector to the copper side of the board, with the copper wire facing up.

  4. 4

    Connect the antenna to the receiver using the pigtail cable.

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