Originally Posted by bigal69
Have 383 stroker in 55 chevy, with aluminum down flow radiator. Am presently running a 13lb. pressure cap and no overflow tank. Does not have A/C or power steering just old style driving. Have been told white smoke out of exhaust when your in the gas hard but not when at steady speed. Notice a bunch of water coming out of exhaust pipes. Found water blown out in engine compartment and water level down a little. Engine has about 800 miles on it since I bought and installed.
You need an overflow tank, vented coolant is replaced by air without one. Air in the cooling system not only is reducing the amount of availble coolant but increases the rate of corrosion within the system by constantly bringing in fresh oxygen which is looking for something to rust. Rust is not good at heat trasfer which makes the parts run hotter but this may not show on the temp gauge because this heat isn't getting into the coolant only being used to distort the shapes and clearances of the parts, you can see where this is going.
When gasoline is burnt about half becomes carbon dioxide and half becomes water, so you do see a lot of water in the exhaust system especially if the engine doesn't get warmed up and held there for an hour or so.
None of this isn't to say your not pulling water into a cylinder, but at the same time don't go ripping up the engine over a non problem. As Z28 points out a quick and dirty check of the plugs looking for an abnormally clean one or a pair of clean ones if a head gasket is blown between two cylinders is a quick check. Another is to pressurize the radiator and watch a test gauge to see if the pressure holds. This inexpensive little tester can be had for under 40 dollars and is suitable for occasional home use <<< Bottom-line pricing on Mityvac - MV4560 at ToolTopia.com
>>> or you can take the car to a radiator shop to have it tested. Either is a better way to go than just ripping the heads off.