Join Date: May 2014
Location: Summer Shade, Ky
I would highly recommend that you DO NOT REMOVE THE AIR BOX, the carburetors on the bike are CV type and need to box to function properly, buy a K&N that fits the OEM airbox(K&N KA-2508 Kawasaki High Performance Replacement Air Filter by K&N http://www.amazon.com/dp/B001RZC1AE/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_WTXtub09YHM5W) that's the short version.
Long boring but important answer, CV carbs stands for "constant velocity". The function of the carbs is dependent on having a calm reservoir (airbox) from which to intake air at said constant velocity. Pods draw from the turbulent, unpredictable air swirling past them as you ride, which is anything but constant. Other carbs work fine with pods. CV's = no bueno, save yourself the headaches.
Now onto jetting, first you need to tune the idle mixture screws first, I recommend 3 full turns out from bottom as a good starting point, then fine tune them afterwards. As far as buying a jet kit, I personally don't have one on either my 250, or 500 ninjas. I did got up one size on my main jets, due to they are lean from the factory, and shimmed the main needles with a small washer.