Mavericks and Failed ARP causing network drops - solved
Since I started at Bath on an OS X Mavericks machine, my SSH sessions were pausing for 4-6s every minute or so (randomly). Playing with Ping, I saw that correct packet routing was simply failing (averaging 7% packet loss for ping).
Much wailing and gnashing of teeth later, and I found a simple fix. OS X Mavericks Unicast ARP packets were failing - so turn them off with ‘sudo sysctl -w net.