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I've read on MTF where a dirty carb maybe the cause of a 2-stroke missing and sputtering but I've also heard that a bad reed valve could cause this condition. Before I tear it apart, let me say that the gaskets on the plate behind the carb are shot and I'll be replacing those also, but I was curious if simply a dirty carb would act up during a cold start or not? Anyone have any thoughts?
 

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the old school method, is just for some seconds(not sure exact time), run with no air cleaner&put a piece of paper right up to carb,&if it gets splattered reeds are leaking.
def replace the gasket,& a sound cleaning
 
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