Ok, so you have your Umbrel node ready, is time for you to connect it with other peers, in order to be able to transact (send and receive sats over the LN).
First things first, a simple checklist for noobs:
- Is your node 100% synced?
- If no, wait for it, is better
- If yes, send some good amount of sats to your node onchain wallet, I will say at least 2-3M sats
- Wait for the tx to be confirmed (at least 6 confirmations)
We can post here our proposals for opening channels between each others. But let’s have some basic rules:
- minimal channel size to be 500k - 1M sats, for a better routing and minimal fees
- channels size between 100k and 500k should be only for special cases or services, that doesn’t need high volume (eg. Sphinx chat, podcasts, tipping etc)
- DO NOT close your channels, just because you don’t use them or you don’t like them. You can loop out part of the funds if you need them for other purpose, but is not really necessary or indicated to close the channels. Those channels can be filled anytime again, with lower fees, or just used to receive funds through LN
- KEEP ON 24/7/365 your node. A node that is quite often shut down is useless to everybody. So be prepared to keep it alive as much is possible
- try to create your own rings of nodes, will be much easier for you to communicate with other peers. Once you have a small ring, you can connect with other big rings or big nodes for a better routing
- ask here politely if somebody is willing to open a node towards your node or if you have available funds to open channels towards their nodes
- opening a channel towards another node is OUTBOUND liquidity for your node (the amount you can send)
- opening a channel towards your node is INBOUND liquidity for your node (the amount you can receive)
- Rebalancing: opening a node towards another node, will not have automatically inbound liquidity (you can’t receive sats to your node). How can you fix this? Simple. After you open a channel and is confirmed, you have 3 options:
a. Loop out (to your onchain wallet) half or less of the amount you used to open the channel. Those sats later can be used to open another channel
b. Send out through LN to another LN wallet of yours, or buy stuff, or send to a family member. Later you can receive it back when you need more outbound liquidity.
c.Using rebalancing tools from the apps RTL or Thunderhub, to take a sats amount from a channel that have too much outbound liquidity and move it to another channel that have too much inbound liquidity. Practically is making a payment to yourself.
There is also and additional way, to connect with more node operators. Some other users, passionate with nodes and LN, they start organizing the so called “Rings of Fire”. Basically creating groups of specific size channels, inter-connected, offering fast and reliable routing, helping each others.
You can find more information about how this works here.
They also have a dedicated Telegram group, where the rings are organized.
LN Balanced Channels - another Telegram group for opening channels and help others with liquidity. Here is the link to their group.