Step-by-Step Instructions to Building a Wi-Fi Yagi Antenna

Written by joe kelly
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Step-by-Step Instructions to Building a Wi-Fi Yagi Antenna
A Wi-Fi Yagi antenna can increase the wireless range of your computer. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Increase the wireless range of your computer by building your own Wi-Fi Yagi antenna. A Yagi antenna is a simple, directional antenna that can increase your ability to find wireless signals at extended ranges. A Yagi antenna is designed to attach to a computer using a USB connector and plugging it into a USB port found on many computers. Constructing a Yagi antenna requires a few tools commonly found around the house and some parts that can be picked up at the local electronics store.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 1247gr. coffee can
  • Hammer
  • Nail
  • N-connector
  • 12-gauge solid wire
  • Soldering iron
  • Solder
  • Coaxial to USB adaptor
  • USB cable

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Punch a hole in an empty, clean 1247gr. coffee can using the hammer and nail. Place the hole on the side of the coffee can up 1 5/8 inches from the closed end.

  2. 2

    Enlarge the hole so it is big enough to fit the end of the N-connector.

  3. 3

    Construct the antenna. Attach a cut length of 1 1/4 inch solid 12-gauge wire to the solder end of the N-connector with the soldering gun.

  4. 4

    Push the N-connector through the hole in the coffee can from the inside. Connect the N-connector to the coaxial-to-USB adaptor so it clamps to the coffee can wall.

  5. 5

    Connect the USB cable's female end to the coaxial-to-USB adaptor. Attach the male end to an open USB port on your computer.

  6. 6

    Search for Wi-Fi signals. Sweep the area with the Yagi antenna until you locate a Wi-Fi hot spot.

Tips and warnings

  • Use a coffee can with smooth metal sides for the antenna receptor to reduce signal reflection. A can with grooves can scatter the signal decreasing the antenna's effectiveness.

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