Even with the air filter off it should not bog, air filters restrict air flow, in a perfect world with no dust or dirt to clog the carb we would not need them. most people try to go with larger filters to get more air flow and in return you get a little more power and response. motors run fine without filters and thats not to say you need to do that but when working on them the filter can be off and it should run just fine. sounds more like a carb prob to me.anytime i rebuild a carb i never put the filter back on or reconect the filter box boot till i know i have done a good job on the carb. when it runs good then i hook it all up and take it out for a test run. if the air filter was off when you bought it its prob got trash in the carb and it a easy fix. GOOD LUCK
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