Video tip: what kind of cloud is that?

Clouds are often referred to as "sign posts in the sky", and for good reason since they are one of the best visual indicators of what mother nature has planned for the weather. This week's tip takes a look at the various types of clouds, when and where they form and what kind of flying conditions pilots can expect when flying in and around them.

Video tip: how to calculate takeoff and landing distances

Just about every airplane includes performance data in the Pilot's Operating Handbook to calculate the runway length required for takeoff and landing under various conditions. The FARs require you to determine these distances as part of your preflight responsibilities, but fortunately the charts published for today's modern airplanes make this task a breeze. This week's tip takes a look at how perform this calculation using the common "chase-around" style charts.

Video tip: the Cessna 172 fuel system

It's important for pilots to have a good understanding of airplane systems to know how to properly operate their controls and troubleshoot them when things don't work as expected. This week's tip takes a look at the Cessna 172 fuel system to show each component and give you a better understanding of how all the parts work together.

Video Tip of the Week: Class B airspace

Class B airspace surrounds the busiest airports, which means there are some important restrictions to remember anytime you're operating within it - or underneath it. In this week's video tip, we review how Class B airspace works, what you need to do to fly legally in it and how to stay safe. Take four minutes and get current today.

Video tip: takeoffs and landings on grass runways

Taking off and landing on a grass strip requires a modified technique to account for the soft runway surface. You'll typically start practicing these maneuvers after solo, which will also help to improve your technique for normal takeoffs and landings.

Video tip: what are AIRMETs and SIGMETs?

In a perfect world we'd always fly in blue skies with a tailwind, but unfortunately mother nature is an ever-present force that can deliver inclement weather from time to time. This week's tip takes a look at a few weather forecast products to help you stay away these conditions, like thunderstorms, turbulence, wind shear, icing and other in-flight weather hazards.

Video tip: Airman Certification Standards (ACS)

The Airman Certification Standards (ACS) spell out the performance standards that you'll need to meet during your private pilot test. It's important that you take time during your flight training to familiarize yourself with this document and use it to help gauge your progress. This week's tip takes a closer look at a few examples of the specific knowledge, skills, risk management elements and performance metrics found in the Private Pilot ACS.

Video tip: how to take off in an airplane

Taking off is one of the most exciting moments of every flight, where you get to swiftly accelerate down the runway and lift off to leave the world below. This week's tips takes a look at the step by step procedure to accomplish this task in a Cessna 172, showing each control input necessary to fly a smooth takeoff on your next flight.

Video tip: reducing drag in a Citation X and Cirrus SR-22

Airplane manufacturers go to great lengths to design the exterior surfaces to be as aerodynamically clean as possible to maximize performance. This week's tip takes a look at the drag-reducing features found on two of the fastest airplanes in both the jet and piston aviation segments.

Video Tip: Cessna 172 exterior preflight

One of the first things you'll learn as a student pilot is how to perform an aircraft preflight inspection. This week's video tip looks at the step-by-step procedures for the exterior preflight of a Cessna 172.