Well, this is more good progress!

I think the conditioning and keeping the "sensitived" electrode in the dark is a great tip that one may not ever figure out on their own...

You say "reduced light" - do you mean safelights or are dim lights good enough?

Any reason not to use a stainless or carbon rod for the "donor" electrode/cathode (negative terminal of the battery)?

If anyone is interested where I found the 12 gauge silver wire, it was here:
http://www.ccsilver.com/silver/superfines.html#four - follow the link for the ".9999 wire"