Piper Vortex Generators VGs Review

Hey I was wondering if we could update this discussion:


What are your tips for people who are considering VGs?

They're not cheap but I don't think I've ever seen a negative review, or spoken to somebody who regrets them.


Digital Product Manager
Piper Owner Society


  • edited October 2021

    I'm aware of a couple of members that have installed vortex generators. Paul in Des Moines installed them on his Cherokee and John in Florida installed them on his Seneca II that he purchased from me 3 years ago. John bought a house on an airport with a 2200 foot runway, if I understand correctly. He brings the Seneca in with the vortex generators and I've heard that he's quite happy with them.

    Scott Sherer
    Wright Brothers Master Pilot, FAA Commercial Pilot
    Aviation Director, Piper Owner Society Forum Moderator and Pipers Author.

    Need help? Let me know!

  • I looked at it but the STC for me doesn't account for winglets so not sure what benefit as the laminar flow will be different

  • I had them installed on my Cherokee 180E in 2018. The advertised numbers fell right in line with actual experience. A reduction in stall of 5. Better slow flight handling was a noticeable result, it's not really so mushy anymore. The stall itself was even more benign than the already mild manors the planes are known for. No reduction in top speed.

    Would I do it again, yes. Did I have a special reason to install them, yes. I own a 2400' grass strip with obstacles at both ends. Some claim it helps climb rates and I don't have data on that, but it does climb like crazy. Summer day with 2 adults and full fuel still gets me an indicated and sustained 1000 fpm. Elevation here is 800' I also got to fly a missing man formation with a 65 hp Champ on tundra tires. We were able to fly together altho just barely. I of course did the climb out.

    If you ever fly into shorter strips or challenging terrain I would certainly recommend them. Mine are the Micro VG's as advertised in this Piper owner society magazine. The cost wasn't bad at all. I helped the A&P and he gave me a break on the price. I was at about $1600 installed and painted, it was easy to do.

  • The BLR STC for a PA-31 increases the gross weight but does not lower the stall speed.

    John, the "Panther Conversion" STC includes both winglets and vortex generators (with stall fences). Each individual STC for winglets and vortex generators states that the installer has to determine whether or not they are compatible.

    Mike Jones will only put winglets on a aircraft that does not have vortex generators unless he does the full Panther conversion STC.

    Garmin Everything

  • edited November 2021

    I had VGs installed as part of the PA32's purchase deal. While I cannot offer a before-and-after comparison, a friend did comment that the plane flew better than other ones he had flown. In fairness, his experience was with rental PA32s, so even without VG's mine might have flown better.

    Despite an ability to compare the VG's installed effects as to behavior without them, am still happy with the purchase as I have passengers with varying degrees of motion sickness, so any less rumping around is a good thing in my perspective.

    Agree with the others about stall characteristics. No mush and an easy break when the full-on stall hits. Plane gives plenty of buffeting warning before the stall.

    Only thing to watch (and this gets placarded) is that there is a limit to how many VGs may either fall-off or take damage. IIRC it is 5. After that number, the aircraft is not airworthy until replacement / repair. So given this, I look at each one during the pre-flight which only adds just a tiny bit of time.

  • And when you're running your hand over the leading edge, don't cut yourself like I did, lol. :)

    Scott Sherer
    Wright Brothers Master Pilot, FAA Commercial Pilot
    Aviation Director, Piper Owner Society Forum Moderator and Pipers Author.

    Need help? Let me know!

  • Yup, have to use extra care when giving the birdie a bath too, those air foils have teeth!

  • I installed Art Mattson's VG's on my 1972 PA28-140 with 160 hp. I operate out of a 2000 ft grass strip with 50 ft Pine trees on the ends. Only 8 VG's total 4 per wing root.

  • You need to have Metco Hoerner wingtips installed as part of Art Mattson VG STC.

  • https://www.pegasusinnovations.com/product-page/vortex-generators
    $600 kit or $300 STC & make your own VG.
    Art Mattson PA28-140 amazing story.

  • thanks everybody this was very helpful

    Digital Product Manager
    Piper Owner Society

  • Only 4 VG's per wing root.

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