[extension] LoRa + GPS board

theoretically, you could make your own LoRaWAN mesh… then you would have all the good channel hopping stuff.

It’s just complex to setup… or you could make your own mesh protocol which consumes multiple LoRa channels (and likely piss off any LoRaWAN users eating up airtime :laughing: )

Note: LoRAWan gateways require like 2+ radios. (7 recommended I think? Been a while)

Someone has a;ready done most od the heavy lifting

RNode Firmware | unsigned.io

The author first built his own profucts (I have two, work well) then opened it up so you can use non proprietary, consumer level products to use the software.

Support for SX1262 , SX1268 and SX1280 is being implemented. No 169 yet?

following up on this; one of the main reasons I got this thing was to use it with LoRaWAN.

@0xKruzr Have you considered getting the uPico board and plugging in a Waveshare LoRa hat?

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I take it all back. https://meshtastic.org is absolutely a thing and means we really need a LoRA + GPS board

We really do. I wonder how easy it would be to make an expansion model that integrates a Waveshare RP2040-lora. Seems like it could be an easy redesign from the uPico.

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There’s a Linux Native Application | Meshtastic for Meshtastic too. You don’t even need an extra microcontroller… just a good LoRA radio (preferentially multi-channel to add potential use-cases for LoRA WAN)

Oh I’m well aware. Already running it on my pi 4 and pi zero 2w. I was under the impression that that CM4 adapter that that clockworkpi uses doesn’t pass through the requirerd GPIO pins for this to be a viable option on the uConsole.

wouldnt it be much easier to simply connect a whole pico + lora board to the internal USB?
if you just want to use meshtastic, using the python cli is much easier than setting up everything using portduino. also this way you can hook up the whole device directly to the 18650 batteries and receive messages even when the main device is powered down.

there should be enough space inside the uconsole to do this even without creating your own pcb.
i would suggest using the HT-CT62 ESP32C3 SX1262 combo device, as it is extremly small and directly supported for meshtastic for about 10usd incl. shipping. if i dont miss something big, you only need to solder 4 pins for usb and power and attach a small antenna to get a fully working meshtastic setup.

Got my 169MHz prototype done last week:


Pretty much exactly what I want to make but I’m hesitating on buying the screen. Also, I can’t find a compact enough battery pack that uses 18650 batteries.

That’s why I was proposing the rp2040-lora. It’s ultra compact and could likely fit on an expansion module board, but I guess you could also place it somewhere inside next to the battery pack.
The advantage of the rp2040-lora is that doesn’t have Bluetooth or WiFi so will save a bit of power.

I have been thinking about this project for a while now. I have also been learning more about Meshtastic and LoraWAN. I think I would prefer to use LoraWAN over Meshtastic. I think Meshtastic is good for groups to stay in communications off grid. But, for use around my property and information sharing with groups I think LoraWAN is the way to go.

I can easily see using the Gemini Protocol over LoraWAN. This would give a group a way to share documents (Gemini pages) and do messaging. It also allows for monitoring sensor networks and other things.

Long story short, I would want to have LoraWAN support on a project like this.

I also like @jessejallday’s idea of using an RP2040 on the board with the LORA radio and GPS. This would allow some of the processing to be offloaded from the main CPU. It also gives us the ability to modify the functionality of the module. This way we could load different code for LoraWAN and Meshtastic.

Anyway, that is my two cents.

I don’t see any messages from @argz since the original post, maybe this entire thread is moot.

Is there a “how to” or template of some sort for designing expansion boards? I’m planning one to hold an F9P board (GPS) and Xbee radio. Should be simple enough but don’t know where to begin.

Yes, you can find the schematic for the 4g board on their GitHub. This will give you the pin out for the expansion port.