Workin the WiFi, & Skype at SetSail


SetSail recently put up another useful survey of what their far flung group of cruising correspondents is doing for communications. This time the theme is “Skype & WiFi”, which is no surprise, especially after my visit to the B.V.I. I regularly saw people Skyping away at the Bitter End’s pub, and many a cruiser’s first question after tieing up his or her dink was regarding the state of the resort’s free WiFi. At SetSail I was particularly intrigued with the post of Joe Boyle, who’s now in Europe with his family aboard a 51’ cat. Joe’s having pretty good luck using a Broadband Express PCMCIA card (above) along with an 8dB antenna he hauls aloft with a topping lift. He reports better coverage than boats with the WaveRV, but now he’s planning to install a 1 watt amp and 11dB antenna (purchased from I know not where). He’s also figured out how to run a Linksys modem on 12v to spread the Internet connection to all three of the boat’s computers (and a few friends in the anchorage).

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

1 Response

  1. Bill Lentz says:

    Has anyone found a Skype stand alone box that will work off of WiFi or even Cellular 3G that will drive an RJ11 without needing a computer tethered to it? I have numerous high speed paths to the internet on my boat and thought it would be fun to fill the 4th line position on my Panasonic 4 line integrated base and 5.8ghz wireless handsets with my SKYPE number?

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