Los Angeles, California


@dbfish - I have not received my goTennas yet (4 coming) but I definitely want to set up a relay node at my house. I work in IT from home and am also a HAM. I’d love to know your setup and/or others that will work well in my location. I’d love a better antenna attached but not sure if that’s necessary. I like the idea of one powered inside but in my window of mancave. Live in country in Tennessee so fair amount of trees around me. We’re 800 feet elevation so mostly line-of-site around me without hills.



I have a small solar panel on the roof and the gotenna hanging on a nail under the roof eve in the shade so it does not overheat - all just temporary for testing right now. I found in direct sun the gotenna can overheat (we have had some warm weather here in northern california - 108F / 42C), so will have to figure that out long term for a weatherproof enclosure. I’ve tested out a 20 foot collapsible fiberglass pole for better elevation and it does help quite a bit. I’m following the MOAN thread with great interest of course! I have a cheap android phone paired to the gotenna at all times within bluetooth range to monitor the battery on the solar panel. It fully charges every day and dips to about 75% overnight before the sun comes up.


Thanks for quick reply!

Unfortunately, our home is surrounded by trees and there is no spot on our roof that will get any sustained sunshine for solar panel. I’m hoping to find some method to power it from window install or maybe power banks of which I can have 2 or 3 that I just swap out as needed. I don’t want to get on roof every time I need to swap out a power bank.

I wonder how long a 10000 or 20000 mAh power bank can keep run of these running.


If you had a USB powered outdoor camera, how would you run power? Gotenna uses very little power to charge. A 30 foot USB cable to a phone charger plugged into an outlet will probably work fine.


I’ve been using this https://www.voltaicsystems.com/v44 12000 mAh battery connected to the gotenna since the 18th, and it seems to be able to last another 1 or 1,5 weeks.


Never even dawned on me that USB cable to phone charger could be 30 feet! I’ll have to check that on Amazon.


A data point on long USB cables and power - Nest Outdoor camera has a 25 foot cable. The camera power required is 5V DC, 1.0A, and the power adapter is 5V DC, 1.4A. Gotenna charges at a much, much lower power requirement, something around 0.25a. So you should be able to use really, really long usb cables with a 5V/1A charger. I have a few 10 foot extensions, I should try this out actually, would be a nice data point. A $50 UPS battery should be able to power a gotenna node for a week, and also charge phones and other units. Would be a fun experiment.


The main limitation of USB cable length is the data connection itself. Also, high draw devices can have issues with cable loss. Since GoTenna will only be sipping power at 250 mA, it won’t have either issue limiting the cable length. Just make sure your USB Cables are heavier duty (the super thin ones won’t work well for 30 feet).

@arcturus, is that runtime on the V44 with or without solar? I assume that’s with the always-on enabled on the V44?


I got a “feelin’” this will be more than enough! :grin:



Yes, it’s set to always on mode without a solar panel connected to see how long the battery will last. I’ve got another one connected with a 9W panel and that one keeps the battery fully charged even in the not so sunny conditions where I live. I’ll post an update on that setup in a couple of days :slight_smile:


That’s impressive.

I just got word that my units will be shipping out real soon. Can’t wait to get started!


There are a few good ways to do long USB runs. Some cables have active repeaters in the middle for very long runs. USB over ethernet is also a possible option. I believe they put repeaters at the end on those cables. You can buy ethernet cable meant for outdoor use but I am not aware of USB cables for outdoor use so the ethernet option may work better(probably cheaper for a long run).

If I were to want power only however I might run a higher voltage and drop it near the device. 12v DC dropped to 5v. I would do that because I don’t know the tolerance of the Gotenna power input and wouldn’t want to test it. A good 12v to 5v USB adapter for a car should handle the voltage swing and hopefully eliminate some of the noise from battery charging at the source if you choose to charge the battery while the system is in use.

EDIT: By the way I just got my mesh. 09/29/2017 Ordered 02/06/2017. Maybe this will give some reference as to where they are in the queue.


@arcturus Can you give us a solar zone where you live for reference. I’m in the 2-3 hour zone.

This could help us rate panel sizes later.


FWIW I have a shitty solar charger that puts out a hugely variable current. Gotenna Mesh is super tolerant. No issues at least in the short term I’ve seen. Someone else on the forums used POE to USB adapters, I would use that for anything over 25 feet.


I live in Stockholm, Sweden. That’s probably a 0-2 zone. So I’ll be able to test it in some of the worst possible conditions for solar in a couple of months :slight_smile:

I just checked on the battery connected to the 9W solar panel and the USB-port that was charging the gotenna had actually stopped working. So the gotenna was dead and had not been charging for some time. I’ve now switched to the second port and will continue to test it. I’ve also paired the gotenna to a phone to be able to monitor the battery more easily.


Update: The V44 battery that was not connected to any power source lasted about 14,5 days total.


Excellent! That’s about a 35 mA draw given the V44 was fully charged and actually holds 44 Wh.


Monterey Hills Node is now online in Northeast Los Angeles,

GID: 9027 0136 4306 85

If you can ping it, let me know your general location you were able to ping from.


I will be in China Town on Friday for a lunch and will technically only be 5 miles from you however it looks like there is some elevated ground between China town and your node so I doubt I will get a clean enough shot.


Could be. I haven’t had a chance to test yet. I have a longer antenna feedline coming today and that’ll allow me to get the antenna up an extra 15 feet.
Let me know how it goes on Friday.