havent been able to get back to it, it's at our shop and I really only get time to go there on tuesdays. it wont flow even if the drain bolt's out so i think it's not the vent. I was flipping it up and down and just blowing in the fuel line - it'd flow until i put the bowl on. So maybe it was upside down, but there's like the little pocket for the float needle to go in, hang it in that and drop it into the hole, i don't see how that'd work upsidedown. but havent checked since you suggested it.
the carb was pretty gummy, I think the little tabs that would help pull the float needle down, one's bent so the needles' just sticking. gonna tryn clean it better and see if a new needle works, and then if not try a new float.