exede/ViaSat home "meshing" network (thru steel)?

  • 1
  • Question
  • Updated 2 months ago
I am currently utilizing a steel shipping container (modified for residency), and I am an exede/ViaSat customer through their "Liberty 25 Package" (I think that's what the subscription is referred to as ... or close thereto).  Obviously, living in a metal box presents its own sets of issues in addition to the normal issues one may encounter with building or modding their residence(s) to their particular needs and uses, especially since the metal enclosure is constant throughout all end walls and doors, ceiling, and floor.  I have my router/modem (ViaSat proprietary, relatively "new type" compared to earlier ones I've had - this one is a Model No.: RM5110), and quite obviously this highly restricts the transmission of the signal that's propagated inside from the modem/router unit and needs to travel through the metal container.  I have some outside needs and uses requiring a valid WiFi signal outside of the container, and this presents a problem when the unit's metal container doors are closed up. 

Granted, I plan to install end walls immediately within the container doors at both ends so I can open the container doors when I want to and expose the added wall/door system (which would then be just like normal exterior residence walls), but even that less restrictive wall is something I'd like to remedy with regard to a decent WiFi signal outside of the container - even when the metal doors are swung wholly open to rely on the added exterior wall.

Most importantly, there is a use/application that needs a decent WiFi signal outside of the container, namely the proper and most efficient use of a couple Whistle Go EXPLORE GPS tracking collars.  This would allow the use of my WiFi for the collar's operation when my dog, "Sig", is at home(and presumably safe), all of which are in regard to the best and most efficient use of the collar's battery system, since hitting and maintaining a location (and geofencing system) thru cellular service really consumes an inordinant (high) amount of the battery's life between recharges.  So, I can clearly benefit with an applicable WiFi signal outside, and in the most important of such uses (the Whistle Collar System) would in fact be prohibitively restricted, which is unacceptable of in fat there is some reasonable workaround I can execute to supply same.

Basically, it seems to me that I need to formulate a way for the signal propagated and maintained inside the container to travel outside, to (and then amplified through) a WiFi extender outside of the unit.  Now, it tends to work toward defeating the purpose of using a WiFi extender by placing an it immediately next to or really close to the mode/router device, especially if in fact both the modem/router and the WiFi extender are of the same or similar 'signal power' (signal power/range/coverage/etc.)  In such a situation (one in which the WiFi extender and the modem/router are of essentially the same 'signal power'), all you'd be extending the range by would be the distance between the modem / router and the WiFi extender.  If you placed the WiFi extender within 3 inches of the modem/router, you would theoretically be extending the range by the same amount (3 inches).  Since this is contrary to my needs, and especially inasmuch as the highly restrictive metal walls / doors / roof / ceiling
are what most need to be addressed in a way to help me get the signal through those metal walls / doors / roof / ceiling, it would seem to me that placing the WiFi [range] extender just outside of the container near where the modem/router is held and maintained would be the best way to effectively create a signal outside of the container equivalent to that within the container (under normal conditions, again in a system where the signal strength of the WiFi extender and the exede / ViaSat modem or essentially equal to one another - you would in effect be simply recreating the original signal from the router / modem OUTSIDE of the container).  Then, if desired, I can utilize more of such WiFi range extenders as long as they are set up in a properly enmeshing network and used to scatter and extend the WiFi coverage even further.

My concerns here are mainly that I can effectively get the signal extended OUTSIDE of the container.  As such, how would I best and most efficiently be able to handle this issue while maintaining as much of the actual container's integrity in doing so? (By that, I mean that I want to cut through and then remove as little of the container's metal walls / doors / ceiling as possible).  Any good ideas and / or info / input for me here?  It would seem that one could cut / drill some sort of hole through the container at the point directly between the modem / router (inside the container) and the WiFi extender (where/when it properly sits immediately outside of the container).  If so, are there any ideas as to how best and most efficiently achieve this (with regard to the best placement of the modem / router inside and the placement of the WiFi range extender outside of the container), taking into account the size, shape, direction / location / placement, etc., of the hole through the metal wall panel(s) / door(s) / ceiling(s) / floor(s)?  Or, are there any other potential ways to achieve the same or similar thing that I have simply overlooked?  Any and all help here is greatly appreciated, that much I can assure you!

One similar thing here if I may in the chance that you can help me with another issue with all the same conditions:

It's obvious that I will have to also work toward effecting the best wireless signal that I can within the container so that I can use my wireless smartphone therein (which is totally different than the foregoing and has pretty much nothing to do with WiFi use/strength except and unless one is able to text/talk through WiFi (available on certain phones with certain applicable wireless carriers))?   I am currently using a simple workaround to achieve this with my Windows OS smartphone and using a Wilson cell phone booster for vehicles - the booster was one I had on hand already that was designed for use in vehicles, so to utilize my wireless smartphone inside the container I now have the booster antenna (with magnetic base) mounted outside of the container (on the container roof)  and the hard wire therefrom passing through the container's metal wall / door / ceiling / floor / whatever and then plugged into the smartphone cradle (that's powered by AC current inside the container) via the supplied SMA coaxial cable from the antenna to the cradle.  This allows me to use the phone wirelessly (via the AT&T network) as long as the phone is actually touching (or very close to) the cradle.  I had a similar booster for home / business use that worked much the same way except that the phone did NOT need to be touching the cradle, and instead could be in fact within roughly a 2000 square foot building...essentially anywhere within most residences.  Neither was anywhere near cheap, but the home / residence device was / is considerably more expensive than the vehicle device (about twice as much for a decent one, or about $00 to $600 or so for the former and about $200 to $250 or so for the latter.)  The residential model crapped out so I am currently using the vehicle designed device with my phone touching the cradle and the cradle powered up - a real pain in the ass and highly restrictive way to achieve a usable signal inside the container - and plan to purchase and swap over to a residential / office applicable device ASAP (currently it's a financial issue that's delaying my upgrade in booster technology and applicability).

Considering the immediate foregoing, I have often seen all manner of booster devices on Amazon, etc, and the price range is very wide.  I've oft' times shopped dx.com for such devices, and they have a huge assortment of these devices within a much, MUCH more reasonable price range as well as a hugely variable range of applications for many carriers and the like (US vs. "European" power cables, various antennae, cabling, etc., etc., etc.).  What's missing at dx.com is the information required to assure compatibility with your current or planned smartphone utilization parameters.  If anyone can enlighten me with regard to the potential compatibility of any of these dx.com stocked items, namely here the type, model, size, needs, power supply / cabling, etc. (currently using a Windows OS phone (Nokia Lumia 950) on the AT&T network carried by Straight Talk Wireless), I would SO VERY MUCH appreciate it!  If not, I still appreciate any help very, very much!!  THNX!!
Photo of Bubba Phillips

Bubba Phillips

  • 1 Post
  • 0 Reply Likes

Posted 2 months ago

  • 1
Photo of J&J


  • 1788 Posts
  • 1083 Reply Likes
I got lost about the third paragraph.  Get an outdoor access point.  WiFi extenders/boosters are junk. You'll need to drill a 1/4" hole for the Ethernet line to exit the container and be capable of installing the rj45 clips to the end of the wire..  If it has POE, a single hole will do.  If the AP has external antenna connector(s) it can be located indoors with a short coax going outside to the antenna.  If you need seamless roaming, set the AP to the same SSID, channel, and security as the indoor main router/AP.

Photo of Dances with Woofs

Dances with Woofs

  • 256 Posts
  • 224 Reply Likes
Too Long; Didn't Read

Literally translates to: That was too long to read. Really translates to: I'm too lazy to read the entirety of what you said, but I still want to say something.

Photo of Dances with Woofs

Dances with Woofs

  • 256 Posts
  • 224 Reply Likes
I too want to say something, so I'll just leave it at  "hubcaps, corn dogs, soul!
Photo of ExSatUser


  • 1329 Posts
  • 808 Reply Likes
It is the weekend. That is all I could tell by that post.
Photo of Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314

Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

  • 3159 Posts
  • 2030 Reply Likes
Go to love the weekends. Great entertainment!
Photo of Dances with Woofs

Dances with Woofs

  • 256 Posts
  • 224 Reply Likes
I'll be here all weekend ;) Be sure to tip your waitress.
Photo of Bob Lexus

Bob Lexus

  • 328 Posts
  • 115 Reply Likes
For the phone calls, if you have a non low budget grade smart phone, enable wifi Calling feature on it.

This POE AP works fine for providing a robust wifi signal outdoors: