Kerik,
Well, that's not encouraging. I've heard similar things, that's why I decided to mix up my own developer with Dektol and exhausted fix, instead of the kit stuff. It has not worked yet, so I decided to go ahead and use the kit developer. It's ripening as I write this. We'll see what happens.
Frankly, I'm still trying to get the exposure time figured out with the enlarger. Anyone have any suggestions?

Instead of using the tintype kit, I wonder how it would look if I simply use liquid light on the metal plates? Probably like a normal silver gelatin photograph, without any of the character of the tintype.

Ah, there are so many variables....when doing fake tintypes...... But I really want to do this project that requires digital manipulation (please forgive me APUGer's).
Steve