i like the 4 stroke method. or, if your cheap, or can't wait for shipping, put whatever old jet in there (within reason) and run it w/ no airfilter. do the "indian hands" where you reach down and cover some of the mouth of your carb. if it runs better with part of the carb covered your too lean. or you can just try it with, and without airfliters, then put some tape over your airfilter, see what performs best.
i have never actually "chopped" a plug. but i do check them to see if the color looks good. it's usually just whatever performs best, untill you start getting really big stuff and really fast. then they kinda want to blow themselves up.
and ALWAYS blast a can or two of carb cleaner/starting fluid/whatever on all mating surfaces of new builds a few times. hose it down, fix it up, run it up to temp, cool it off, check torques, repeat. i blew up a gila because i was having so much fun i kinda neglected that part.
temp gauges are good too, and make sure you time it good. the phva carb leads me to think your on a tomos, so get a cheap timing light and do it right. timing lights are awesome. they make your flywheel appear to stop turning while your bike is running. totally bugs me out every time.