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Simply, the seat is the hole that the needle sits in. You can generally tell if the nedle is worn by looking at it with a magnifying glass. If you can see any rings around the tapered part, you need new ones.

I don't know your bike, but often times when you screw the idle jet in and then back it out a certain number of turns, dirt in there prevents you from really FEELING when that needle seats- so you just wank on it until it stops. A lot of times that will ruin them. Good cleaning will let you feel when it seats so you don't mar them. Depending on your carbs, you probably have more than one set of needles / jets. Ron Ayers site has a good parts blow-up section so you can get an idea of what the little bits look like.
 
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