Extending AP's and CMM

We have a 500’ tower that we plan on installing a 6 AP system onto. Is there any feasable solution so that we would not have to put the CMM up on the tower 200’. This would be a pain running electricity up to it as well as any maintenance (lightning strike) that could potentially happen. Any Suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.


I’ve considered building an AP – more likely 3 APs forming a half-cluster in a single enclosure – with integrated GPS timing. The result would be the same as putting the CMM at the top of the tower, but with fewer pieces of equipment and less weight. Getting power and an Ethernet signal 500’ up the tower, however, is problematic.

Power: The cheapest solution would be a 1000’ spool of 14-2 or 12-2 UF (Underground Feeder, for sunlight-resistance) electrical wire. You could power the cable with 24VDC, but you’d first need to verify the voltage drop and the Canopy’s minimum operating voltage; I’m guessing it’s about 7-10VDC. You could instead power the cable with 48VDC or even 120-240VAC, but then you’d need power supplies added at the top.

Ethernet: Cat5e or better cable will permit full-duplex Ethernet and Fast Ethernet to operate beyond 330’, but I’ve never tried it. Ethernet-extenders might be needed; www.TutSystems.com makes the XL-5050, for about $650/pair, with 50mbps of full-duplex bandwidth over a single pair of wire. This is likely cheaper than running fiber. The XL-5050, however, has a bridge-table limit of only 32 MAC addresses; I’ve emailed Tut to learn if the XL-5050 is still a possibility.

The Tut Systems option – if it works – might make it possible to operate the entire cluster – both power and data – over a single Cat5 cable: 1 pair for data, 3 pairs for power, with DC-to-DC converters at the top.

Let me know if you want me to design and build it for you – but I’m not climbing the tower!

We have a cluster on a 425 ft. tower using cat5e by time the cat5e reaches the shack it is about 450 ft. long. The ap’s had to be configured to 10 full for it to work. The site has been up for 3 years not one problem.

whoaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!! 500’??

the tallest i have is 100’…hmmm… about times 5 than what i’ve seen… i did climb in the 60’…but not higher than that…whoaa…

Our equipment is 280’ up on two towers. Higher would be good. :frowning:

I received a response from Tut Systems about their VDSL-based XL-5050 Ethernet extender with a bridge table limitation of 32 MAC entries:

Before the table is full, the unit operates as a self-learning bridge. After the table is full, it operates as a transparent bridge.

The 32-entry limitation will not limit the XL-5050’s use for servicing a Canopy AP cluster serving 1200 customers.