A cantenna is a directional waveguide antenna for long-range WiFi (cf. Hi-fi) which can be used to increase the range (or snoop) on a wireless network. Originally employing a Pringle's® Potato Chip can, a cantenna can be constructed quickly, easily, and inexpensively out of readily obtained materials. It requires four nuts, a short length of medium gauge wire, a tin can roughly 9 cm (3.66 inches) in diameter, the longer the better, and an N-Female chassis mount collector, which can be purchased at any electronic supply store. The original design employed a Pringle's can, but an optimal design will use a longer tin can. Instructions for constructing and connecting a cantenna can be found at Turnpoint.net.
While cantennas are useful for extending a local-area network (LAN), the tiny design makes them ideal for mobile applications, such as wardriving. Its design is so simple and ubiquitous that it is often the first antenna that WiFi experimenters learn to build. Even the Secret Service has taken an interest in the can antenna.
How to make a Cantenna
- An N-male chassis mount connector
- One side is N-female for connecting the cable from your wireless equipment, and the other side has a small brass stub for soldering on wire. These can be found at electronics stores internet suppliers (see the list below under "Connect your antenna..." If you shop around, you should be able to find these for $3-$5.
- Four small nuts and bolts
- A bit of thick wire
- A can
- How to build a wifi cantenna - Clear, easy to understand instructions with outstanding results!
- Brand New Wardriving dedicated site - Great tutorials on how to make your very own cantenna with pictures!
- Do-It-Yourself Wireless Antenna Update Looking for inexpensive ways to increase the range of your wireless network? That and much more.