Poor Cellular Coverage in the Brewery

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cpuguru

Active member
Sep 25, 2020
25
3
I was very frustrated with the crappy cellular signal (none) in the brewery yesterday.

It's wrapped in metal siding and the cell coverage from Verizon frequently drops to zero bars (SOS).

Any suggestions on a cellular repeater where I can mount an antenna on the outside of the building and wire it to a repeater inside?

Lots of single channel options showing up in an Amazon search - best case scenario would be LTE/4G/5G with Verizon support if it doesn't break the bank.

Cheers!
 
I'll be interested in knowing whether you're able to see success with a cellular repeater.

The residential area I inhabit in the evenings has notoriously awful cell coverage. Fortunately both my wife and I are Verizon subscribers so that any single solution resolves both our problems. We obtained a Verizon "Network Extender" six years ago -- for no charge -- after complaining that our local coverage was abysmal. It connects to our wired LAN and produces an "all bars" signal throughout its range, which is sufficient to cover our entire residence. Some other Verizon neighbors stand in front of our home when they want to use their phones.

I'm unsure whether an outage caused by standing in a large "Faraday Cage" would qualify for a free "Network Extender" -- but we had been told by many people that it ought to be free if we were in a "dead zone".
 
Got a suggestion of the WeBoost line from Brian Chee (@advnetlab) on the Twitter - he said he uses one in his car but they also have residential offerings:
 
I don't know how applicable this is to your current situation, since technology has changed since this happened, but, ....

About 15 years ago we were living in a mobile home with very poor reception. We could get a signal by going out into the middle of the road, but, even that was iffy. I bought a cell phone signal booster and installed it. It had an antenna that was about 6 or 8 inches long that I mounted on a pole above the roof and aimed toward the nearest cell tower (about 15 miles away). The antenna connected to a repeater station inside.

It made a marked difference in the quality of the signal. We could get full bars any time we wanted to make or receive a phone call. In fact, it was so strong that I noticed our neighbor (50 to 75 feet across the road) sanding at the end of their driveway talking on her cell phone, more often than usual. One day while she was talking on the phone, I turned off the repeater station. She immediately checked her bars to see what had happened to the signal, so I turned it back on.

Unfortunately, after about a year, it was hit by lightening, and since it had cost several hundred dollars, I didn't replace it. In the mean time the cell signal here has gotten stronger over the years, were now living in a frame house, and we don't have as much need for a signal booster.

Since mobile homes are basically large metal boxes, I thought this might be applicable to your situation.
 
Since the introduction of voice over data (VoLTE and VoWifi) I would've thought that all most people needed was a wireless internet connection whenever they need to hold a conversation.

I also believe that voice over data is native on 5G so that it doesn't have to drop down to 3G/HSPA to take a call (since that's what happened before voice over data).
 
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Since the introduction of voice over data (VoLTE and VoWifi) I would've thought that all most people needed was a wireless internet connection whenever they need to hold a conversation.

I also believe that voice over data is native on 5G so that it doesn't have to drop down to 3G/HSPA to take a call (since that's what happened before voice over data).
Unfortunately the reason I'm trying to get a cellular link is as a backup because the internet connection at the brewery is crap - the cable provider link drops at inopportune times which means no tunes and no brewing software connectivity.
 
That certainly makes things challenging. Closer to your original repeater suggestions it may (at the very least) be possible to stick a high gain 4G antenna on the roof into a mobile broadband router to hook into it. I've seen some pretty amazing things be done in locations where a cell phone didn't pickup any signal but external high gain antennas do.
 
We played with a repeater at our old location for a while...until we had someone show up at our door asking if we were running one. Apparently it was in a feedback loop and was affecting tcell tours within a 10KM radius.