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Since I put the 2.1 head on my 85 SPG, I have heard a very quiet tapping sound from the pass. side of the engine. Until recently I thought it was an exhaust leak pre-manifold. Busting out the garden hose to narrow down the sound's source has led me to one of the valves/lifters/cam followers on the intake side closest to the front of the car. Now I have the valve cover off, but how do I diagnose this problem? I'm not too sure how the followers should act (ie: still have some hydraulic 'squish' when not fully compressed by the cams, etc.) Must I take out the intake cam and remove the follower to look at the lifter? What should I look for at that point? Thanks.
 

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Saab Mad
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You can test each lifter in turn. Rotate the engine over so lifter number one is not compressed (you could take out the spark plugs to make turning over the engine easier). Then compress the lifter using a non-metallic lever and observe by how much the lifter compresses before the valve opens.

You'll find one lifter that compresses more than all the others.

You could also use ane engineer's stethescope to narrow down your search. Warning: even a new engine sounds shagged out when listened to thorugh a stethescope :lol:

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