Worklog - Air-Stream Wireless 13m Mast

Discussion in 'Modding Worklogs' started by Laggy7, Dec 18, 2013.

  1. Laggy7

    Laggy7 Member

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    I thought i would do a build up of something a little different, and show off some of the wireless gear i have in my backyard. I have 3mbit adsl @home so anything i can get my hands on get decent speeds of youtube for the wife and gaming for me is a plus.

    Im part of a group called Air-Stream Community Wireless , here in Adelaide. I am myself a committed member; and have completed many builds across the state. Mostly home sites with radio masts protruding out people's roofs, with normally an omni and directional antennae for a connection. I once had an in-roof mast and i always wanted to build something decent to get above the local surroundings and connect myself to the network; and provide others the opportunity to connect to me.

    This is the buildlog of my mast:

    Here is my initial setup (tied to a chimney):
    [​IMG]

    and what was the end result:
    [​IMG]

    Started by digging a big hole in the backyard, and hitting yee-olde sewer pipes (dialbeforeyoudigoftengetsitwrong) and having to move the hole two times to clear it!, The hole measures: 800x800w by 600d took the better part of a week to get through it; lucky for my there wasn't any clay ;)
    [​IMG]

    I then dug a smaller guywire hole 250x250x400d complete with chain and lots of rebar:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I used 2x 6500x60x4mm galv pipes with a 4m pipe in the middle to hold the weld and pin together. We put some spikes in the end to tie it in with the concrete:
    [​IMG]

    I got my mate to machine up some custom 'collars' to help set the guywires; these took ages to make but worked fantastic, and look far better than plates:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    We used a boom-lift to position and lift the mast into place before the 30 bags of concrete was used to set her in the ground; while all this was happening i had 4 guys running around setting the guy wires in place:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Once the mast was up i put up a 2.4 ghz omnidirectional (for a beacon and client connections) and a 2.4ghz for a wireless connection, some 21km away (24db grid)
    Note: the LMR400 coax! stuff is 12 bucks a metre:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Here is the initial wireless box with the Routerboard 433 and 2x wireless cards (XR2 omni, r52h grid)
    [​IMG]
    Switch and cables
    RB433ah and RB711
    [​IMG]
    Power Injection:
    [​IMG]


    and replaced the box with something quite a bit larger:

    got the 300x300x200 box from grays for $20 ;) and modded it myself to suit the purpose:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
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    [​IMG]

    This setup stayed like this for ages while the network grew around me, and i was able to connect to sites alot closer

    I then went into upgrade phase 3 and replaced all the gear at the site, requiring yet another boom, 3x boxes of cat5e, 1x Bullet M2HP, 2x Ubiquiti Nanobridge M5-25, 3x Rocketdish 30's, 2x Routerboard 750UP's, Dedicated power and a UPS:
    [​IMG]

    Server that was in the shed:
    [​IMG]

    It was a massive job to move the box into the shed, ended up doing 8x runs of cat5e! and deleted all the coax from the mast, but the end result was was fantastic;The RB750up are a huge upgrade from what we had done in the past; they provide POE24v, Switch and router!

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    from top to bottom:
    Omni+BulletM2: client connections
    NanobridgeM5-25: Blair-Athol 7km
    NanobridgeM5-25: Mansfield-Park: 3km
    Rocketdish30: Sefton Park: 10km
    Rocketdish30: Ingle-Farm: 8km
    Rocketdish30: Northfield: 9km


    Enjoy!
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2014
  2. OP
    OP
    Laggy7

    Laggy7 Member

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    Edit: there are 2x rocketdishes shown; and i recently put up the third (no picture as yet)
    -- Intentionally left blank --
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2013
  3. Cracktastic

    Cracktastic Member

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    Awesome Job bro! ima steal some internets from you now. :p
     
  4. Aetherone

    Aetherone Member

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    I'm going to have to have a chat with ya sometime in the next 6-9 months. :thumbup:
     
  5. OP
    OP
    Laggy7

    Laggy7 Member

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    for sure, msg me when ya move out when ready :D

    where abouts are you atm?
     
  6. trackhappy

    trackhappy Member

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    That is epic. I'd love to do point-to-point wireless links (despite my huge problem with heights...), but have never had a need for such a system, nor a location for the other end. :lol:
     
  7. terrastrife

    terrastrife Member

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    You need to hook me up :p

    Which means making sure Ulebury is awesome :D
     
  8. zero_velocity

    zero_velocity Member

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    Wow this is simply amazing... I am very jelly :shock:
     
  9. Dan`

    Dan` Member

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    ulebury sucks and will most likely always suck, tho there has been some huge gains out north lately so its becoming less needed on the network.

    we do however have a heap of new gear about 50m in the air on the huge water tower behind holdens


    and other major sites going up out that way soon as well
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2014
  10. terrastrife

    terrastrife Member

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    I'm not in range of the water tower :(
    Munno Para Downs.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    Laggy7

    Laggy7 Member

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    there's always a site to connect to terra :D we have been working on a pair of sites in smithfield, could prove to be useful to you
     
  12. Badooleoo

    Badooleoo Member

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    There is a site in Andrews Farm you can connect to.
     
  13. silentlightning

    silentlightning Member

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    How much did it cost to put the tower itself up? Including concrete pad and ewp access.

    Did you have to do any paper work for the ACMA , I assume not since its all low power grade gear.

    I'm quite curious because I work for ericsson and the amount of work that goes into getting a site compliant with Telstra and the ACMA is huge
     
  14. Dan`

    Dan` Member

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    ill give a shot at answering some of it to the level i understand it, im sure someone else will pipe up if i missed the ball...
    because its as you said low power and its public spectrum (2.4 and 5ghz range) we dont have to really deal with the ACMA/licensing/interference etc. legally we have to keep power outputs within legal limits but its completely not policed as far as i understand it so its more of a best practice thing we do to set an example for others to follow. the only real place i know is much different is the water tower i linked to in my post above which also has TV and fone antennas on it as well as uhf (i think it is) amateur radio gear on it. the site is council owned and managed by MIMP and for us to do much there we need to apply and document so as to show we wont interfere with any of the other gear thats already there.

    hope that shed some light on it, im only new at all this myself so forgive me if ive screwed something up...
     
  15. OP
    OP
    Laggy7

    Laggy7 Member

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    total cost in the end for the tower was under $500; ewp hire can be as little as $150 if you shop around, council approval can vary from $80~200. Im lucky enough to have neighbors that didn't contest the approval. Most client installs are under $300; and look nothing like this, as you can see from our gallery.

    as for the ACMA; we are only using unlicensed spectrum which is 900mhz/2ghz and 5ghz channels; similar to what Adam-max (and some other wisp's) use just more gain, less noise and less power ;)

    working for ericsson, im sure you would be using licensed spectrum (3.5/7/11ghz) , and more so you'd need an awful lot more bandwidth that what we need!

    please note, Air-Stream is a non for profit community group.
     
  16. Badooleoo

    Badooleoo Member

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    It is actually under a class licence and uses the ISM bands.

    http://www.air-stream.org/air-stream-wireless/exempt-carrier
    http://www.air-stream.org/class-licence-requirements

    It's the same as your home WiFi you use such as your modem.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  17. LostBenji

    LostBenji Member

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    Up a tower somewhere....
    I was a little surprised to see this thread on the front page considering it has died off and nothing fresh since Xmas....


    However, Laggy, how long have you been doing u-wave?
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2014
  18. n2o_spark

    n2o_spark Member

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    I just saw this on the front page too, for private work this all looks really neat.

    I recently started an eletrical apprenticeship and we mainly put up wireless links
    and do data work. The ubiquity stuff, though the packages say point to point, we've had some sucess running them point to multipoint, though we're talking power bridges not little nano's.
    However i'm sure the nano's would do multi point also.
    I might see if there are any locals doing such things... i've been nudging my boss to see if i can get a PtP link on my roof to get NBN, and even found a reasonable set of panels that we got as demo units that i might be able to convince him to let me have cheaply :D
     
  19. DJ_Hippster

    DJ_Hippster Member

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    Woo go laggy :)

    We (Air-Stream) have quite a few really nice neat builds out there :)

    Highly encourage everyone to visit our website and check it all out :)

    (Or if you are into IRC, hit up our webchat https://webchat.air-stream.org/ :thumbup:)
     
  20. LINUX

    LINUX Member

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    Nice work! I've always wanted to get into long range wifi links as a hobby but have never found enough local interest....So I just got an amateur license and talk to people all over the world instead.

    On that note: If you got a "standard" amateur licence you can ignore the ERP limit and legally run 32W average power into the antenna (or 120W average with an advanced licence). Edit: In the frequency range 2.4->2.45GHz, so channels 1-6 when using 20MHz bandwidth or ch3 if using 40MHz 802.11n.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2014

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