FlightAware Discussions

PiAware Outdoor Install in Minnesota

I would like to install my Pi 4B outside in some sort of water-proof enclosure, which will allow me better antenna placement without drilling a hole through my wall. The enclosure would need room for a Pi 4 and the FA SDR.

Has anybody here successfully done this?

Quite a few people have.

Personally I prefer:

Antenna >> Filter >> LNA [at the top] >> Decent 50 ohm co-ax >> SDR >> Pi4 [Indoors]

Having the Pi4 out in the sun and the SD card inaccessible does not make sense to me unless it is a well proven setup with good cooling.

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I am looking for a solution that doesn’t involve drilling a hole through a wall. I want to have everything outside, not just the antenna and coax. Plan B is putting everything in my garage, but that means fewer planes tracked.

I am in Minnesota, so outside temps aren’t all that high here. Winter might present the opposite challenge, too cold. I am comfortable connecting via ssh over wifi, so I don’t need physical access to the SD card.

Device in the garage, antenna mounted on top of it. Requires exactly one hole to be drilled

One could always run the coax on the outside of the house to have the weatherproof box well accessible :wink:

I suppose power is already there @KV0KEV ?

Of course, I realize one hole would be required if the Pi is installed indoors. While I appreciate your input, that isn’t what I’m asking. I am looking for people who have done a 100% exterior installation to avoid drilling through the wall.

If not, it will require drilling a hole.

Yes, I have power outside.

:+1: Above seems a good solution.

Outdoor Setup - No holes

Well, take a look at this thread, it shows different types of setups, for sure there will be outdoor installations as well.

For an example of an outdoor installation, this is the first that comes to my mind. Not as cold as Minnesota in winter, I guess, but maybe summer temperatures might be comparable, to a degree.


Thanks everybody. I ordered a water proof enclosure from Amazon, will hopefully set this up over the weekend.


I wanted to follow-up on this. I now have a fully-outdoor PiAware install.

I purchased a SOCKiTBOX (medium size) and installed everything outside. I have a reasonably out-of-the-way and sheltered spot for this by my deck. It looks to be very water-proof. The official Pi 4B operating temperature only goes down to 32F, but I found some forum posts claiming they still worked fine at -40F so it might even work in a Minnesota winter.

The CanaKit power cable, switch, and transformer are all tucked inside, only a weather-proof extension cord comes out. It is hard to see in the picture here, but there is some compressible foam where the cord leaves the SOCKETiTBOX making what appears to be a water-tight seal. I am using a case with passive (no fan) cooling for the Pi 4B. Using wi-fi for data.

Here is everything tucked away with only the power cable and coax coming out.