How to Make a Tin Can WiFi Booster

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The idea of using a tin can to boost Wi-Fi reception is the increased reception strength that is gained by capturing the radio waves off the can's surface. Radio waves themselves are very directional, which is why a larger surface pointed in the direction of the desired signal is heightened by the addition of a surface like a satellite dish. The juice can antenna is an optimum size for both increasing signal strength and moving it around. The result is a range of up to one mile, significantly more than a Wi-Fi antenna's typical range of 300 feet.

Things You'll Need

  • Juice can
  • USB Wi-Fi antenna
  • Glue
  • Silicone caulk
  • USB connection cable
  • USB extension cable (optional)
  • Empty a 42 oz., 4.25-inch diameter can of the liquid. Remove the opened end of the can, clean the can interior with soap and water.

  • Mark with a marking pen a point 1-5/8 inches up the can's outer side from the closed end of the can.

  • Drill two drill holes to either side of the marked point. File the opening enough to fit the plastic portion of a USB Wi-Fi adapter two-thirds through the can opening.

  • Glue the Wi-Fi adapter to the can. Use silicone caulk to make a water-tight seal on the outside of the can.

  • Connect any male-female USB cable to the USB end of the USB Wi-Fi adapter. Connect the other end of the adapter to an open USB port on your computer. Alternatively connect a USB extender cable between the first USB cable and the computer. You can use USB cable up to 50 feet.

  • Install the Wi-Fi adapter software from its Install CD, or download the software from the manufacturer's website.

  • Adjust the tin can antenna for the strongest reception.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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