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Thread: Vortex Generators (Maybe even Winglets!)

  1. #1

    Vortex Generators (Maybe even Winglets!)

    I recently read a post talking about how vortex generators can reduce aerodynamic drag on a motorcycle by creating laminar flow around the rider, preventing the rider from creating turbulent flow.


    Now, I think most of us don't have access to supercomputers to model vortex generators on a motorcycle, but for the average rider, are there rules of thumb with vortex generators? Can laymen reduce parasitic drag on a motorcycle through the deployment of vortex generators?

  2. #2
    Registered User donbmw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Monroe La.
    Most of the vortex generator kits I have install on most general aviation aircraft are small and could be made easily. They area mostly 1/4 angle 1 long the leading edge is curved. They epoxied in place. They are not just randomly installed.
    1975 R90/6, 1980 and 1982 R65, 2015 Ural Patrol, 1959 TR3A Triumph Car

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Western Massachusetts
    Aerodynamics is a complex subject, and not necessarily intuitive. I took a couple of courses in it in engineering college; just enough to know I don't know much.
    The odds that you could come up with a system which would make any significant difference without a significant investment in modeling and/wind tunnel time are slim. Too many variables in real-world conditions, rider sizes and positions, and for what benefit?
    FWIW, even your linked-to article contains errors. A bike's drag coefficient of 0.6 doesn't mean it has more drag than a large SUV. That coefficient needs to be multiplied by the vehicle's frontal area to determine total drag, which the author apparently overlooked.

  4. #4

    Hard to clean

    Nuisance to clean (on planes)

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