How To Make a Wi-Fi Antenna Out Of a Pringles Can . DIY super awesome outdoor wifi antenna Antena Wifi, Diy Electronics, Electronics Projects, Satellite. Build a WiFi Antenna out of a Pringles can Antena Wifi, Pringles Can, Wifi This is my nerd School project (turning a Pringles can into a long range wifi antenna. b Homebrew WiFi Antenna Shootout. I’ve been networks with ( WiFi). One of the first things that got me excited was the Pringles Can Antenna.

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Ingenious internet users have been using everything from kitchen foil and food strainers, to home made Yagi style antennas to boost their Wi-Fi ranges.

This article has you covered. Read More your home Wi-Fi system without building additional hardware, there are simple DIY solutions that can also make a real difference to your surfing experience. Why would you want to make something like this? Many people use them to extend their Wi-Fi signal to a hard to reach part of the home, or even extend their Wi-Fi to the bottom of the garden.

They can also be very useful to people who rely on public internet access. Perfect for when your own internet goes out and you want to be able to keep surfing in your slippers!

While there are many variations on this type of build, today we are striving for a balance of price and simplicity. This guide should help you quickly build your own range boosting Wi-Fi cantenna. While these antennas were an amazing feat of DIY engineering for their time, they had a few fundamental flaws.

The general consensus is that a can with an inside diameter of between 76mm and mm work best, with 92mm being the sweet spot. Clocking it at an inside diameter of 72mm, a the Pringles can is too thin.

For it to be effective it would have to be well over a meter long. Also, there are conflicting opinions as to whether the Yagi collector design is any more effective than a well proportioned waveguide design. The first decision to make is which kind of can to use. The size of our choice is important, as there are set fundamental dimensions which allow the cantenna to work.

Look out for cans with a 92mm diameter that are around mm in length, though you may find something exactly of that size hard to find! You can use this tool to calculate whether the cans you have collected would be effective. The important part to pay attention to once you have the calculations for your diameter is the inside length. The closer you get to the dimensions from the calculator, the better your cantenna will function.

I found that a coffee can diameter 88mmand a large food can mmwere closest to the right size. The coffee can was a little short on length, but the 2cm it is lacking is still quite the difference from the 26cm of length the Pringles can falls short on. The food can came up to almost perfect dimensions, though the edges are ridged, which will impact its performance.

I decided to make both cans into cantennas — this guide covers the construction of the coffee can, though the construction is exactly the same for both, just with different spacing as per the calculating tool above. The probe is the small piece of copper wire which will stick out into the middle of our can. We will be attaching this probe to the female N type connector using our soldering iron. I would advise cutting a slightly large piece of wire to begin with, and soldering it into place inside the brass socket on the top of the connector.


The length of this probe is very important — and you need to be sure to measure from the bottom of the brass connector to the where the tip of the probe will be. Even a millimeter off here and your Cantenna may not work as well as it could! Measure carefully to the length specified in your calculations, and cut the probe to the correct length.

802.11b Homebrew WiFi Antenna Shootout

Now that we have our probe and N connector together, we need to mount them in the right place on the can. Once again, this has to wlfi as precise as possible, so take your time! It is also worth noting that this measurement is to be taken from the base of the can, not the ridge around the bottom.

Once you have your precise measurement it anyena time to cut the hole. I used a drill followed by an angle grinder on my rotary tool — which was fiddly to say the least! Just to test I also made one using only a screwdriver to punch a hole, and a pair of needle nosed pliers to slowly bend it outwards until it was the correct diameter.

Pringles Can Antenna Turns 10

Neither of these methods are ideal, and I would recommend using a stepping drill bit to make this part easier. Whichever method you use, measure the diameter of your N type connector with the nut removed, and make a hole slightly bigger, so that the N connector can slide in. I found that making a slightly too small hole which I then widened using a file worked well.

You should now be able to fit the connector, by pushing it through and attaching the nut from the inside. Be careful whilst doing this! I managed to cut my hand twice on the inside rim of the coffee can.

I guess someone forgot to take his own advice with the filing. Now that the can itself is finished, we need a way to attach it to our computer or router to reap the benefits. Once that is done, remove the aerial that comes with the adapter by unscrewing it, and attach the smaller end of your pigtail connector instead. Attach the other end of the pigtail to the protruding N type connector.

Homebrew antenna shootout

To test it out, take your computer to a place where your Wi-Fi signal is usually very low, and point the cantenna in the direction your Wi-Fi signal comes from. Where possible, a clear line of sight is best, though I found there to be a significant signal boost even pointing it through the thick walls of the old apartment building I live in.

You may find that you get a better signal with the probe pointing sideways rather than straight up — if you can see the aerials on the router you are connecting to, try to mimic their orientation for the best results. Many people connect their cantennas to tripods in order to get the best control over direction and orientation, in this case a little Macgyvering with zip ties and an old plastic plant pot did the job perfectly!


I tested both the coffee and food can designs, and both boosted my Wi-Fi significantly.

Gergory Rehm of Turnpoint. I used a free piece of software called Homedale to measure the strength of the Wi-Fi signals I was receiving, in both cases you can see the cantennas blue line going off the top of the graph gave a significantly higher signal when compared with the internal Wi-Fi receiver of the laptop yellow line. The readouts from the adapter listing page in the software show an average of around a 20dBm boost.

While the coffee can cantenna is still not optimally sized, it performs well as a performance booster, and with the food can performing well in close quarters too, I am looking forward to testing these over a greater range. In many situations this will be the difference between intermittent, close to unusable internet and a stable usable connection.

Witi you need to extend the distance between your computer and the cantenna, I would recommend using a USB extension cable. Another approach to take is to connect the cantenna to your router to boost the signal from the source. By pointing a transmitting cantenna from your router to a receiving cantenna at your computer, you will be able to boost your range significantly.

This is perfect if you want to direct your Wi-Fi signal to an outbuilding, or to give your garden full coverage. You could even use it to share your connection with a nearby house if wifj are feeling neighborly!

How To Make a Wi-Fi Antenna Out Of a Pringles Can

It is worth noting however, that this boost will be directional depending on the orientation of the can, and while it will help hugely in one direction, it may limit the strength of the signal in other areas. It is worth doing this regardless however, as you can expect to see great performance increases from this upgrade alone. Firstly, you can try to add one yourself. This method is a little involved, and may vary from router to router.

If this seems like something a little out of scope, another incredibly simple way to boost your Wi-Fi signal is to create a parabolic reflector to place behind it and focus the signal. While there are many approaches to improving Wi-Fi range, these builds are a quick and simple way to improve it without breaking the bank.

Have you built a Cantenna in the past? Have you come up with your own crazy designs for boosting your Wi-Fi signals? Let us know in the comment section below! Your email address will not be published. The signal strength improvement is 20 dB, not 20 dBm. A great tool for drilling holes in thin sheet metal is a “stepped” drill bit “Unibit” or clone thereof.

Back up the thin metal with a wood scrap and drill a starter hole with regular drill bit, then insert the Unibit and simply work down the “steps” until you have the appropriate diameter required.

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