Check at the auto parts stores that borrow or rent tools to see if they have a cylinder leakage tester. You put each piston, one at a time, on top dead center on the compression stroke, then pump in compressed air through a gauge. The gauge will read the percent of leakage, and you can listen at four places for the source of the leakage. Tail pipe: burned exhaust valve. Carburetor: burned intake valve. Oil cap or dipstick tube: piston rings. Radiator bubbles: head gasket or cracked head.
They also make a whistle that screws onto the tester's hose that makes finding top dead center real fast and easy. You crank the engine by hand with a socket and ratchet, and as the piston slowly comes up on the compression stroke, the whistle will let you know you're there when it stops whistling.
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Sunday, April 24th, 2011 AT 10:01 PM