As PE very tastefully hinted, his emulsion coating blades (available from Photographers Formulary) produce much smoother results than any other coating technique (at least that I've tried). I broke my budget resolution and bought a 10 in blade. One thing and another will keep me from playing with it for the next ten days, but I plan to post a review of the blades (4x5 and 8x10) on Nov 1.

Flying Camera: I can certainly recommend you try silver gelatin coating. I knew I'd enjoy learning it for learning's sake, but the satisfaction of the product has been an unexpected bonus.