I am thinking engine oil lifters are bleeding down, causing no compression! on 1995 Toyota Corolla

I just cheaply bought a 1995 Toyota Corolla 1.8 with 170,000 miles super clean, was told car was parked for awhile. Problem is most of the time after being parked for 2 or 3 hrs , vehicle does not start at times. Checked out cylinder compression when dont start and it had none, after cranking for 1 or 2 minutes car starts missing and making lifter noise, then after about 3 to 5 minutes clears up and runs PERFECT as long as I don't let it sit 2 to 3 hrs again. Engine has no blowby and dont smoke. Funny thing is that sometimes I can shut it off leave it overnight and, not often, will start right up. No other vehicle history is known to me. Also has an EGR Valve code ,where do I start

by in McAllen, TX on December 05, 2010
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2 answers 2 comments
ANSWER by , December 05, 2010
The valves in your engine have "shim" adjusted valves no hydraulic self adjusting valves. Do you have spark and fuel when the engine won't start? A cylinder leakage test (putting air into a cylinder) is a more valid test when checking why a engine looses compression.
COMMENT by , December 07, 2010
Thanks Mr. Mannion, we'll ck into it. Appreciate the quick response. By the way, it does have spark and fuel . A friend knows a little about cars and says he thinks engine is too clean that it looks like they worked on engine it has signs of new gaskets. Thanks again!
ANSWER by , December 06, 2010
If the EGR valve stuck in the open position it could cause the hard start / no start situation. I'd eliminate the EGR problem first. Zee
COMMENT by , December 07, 2010
Thanks ZeeTech , appreciate the quick response, will look into EGR problem