If there was anything more we could suggest, we would have included it in the recipe. However, as I said in the recipe, this is for people who are skilled in the art. That means people who know how to make leak-proof vacuum chambers that do not contaminate the gas with something like solder; people who know how to operate mass spectrometers; people who will not accidentally ingest nickel dust, and so on. I myself am not one of those people. I could not do this experiment. Consequently, I cannot add anything to the recipe.
I think a person has to know a great deal just to follow the instructions. If you don't know this stuff, I cannot imagine you will succeed. It would be like me trying to cook a cordon bleu gourmet meal suitable for a first-class restaurant.
I take your point about people needing a basis of technical experience in order to effectively follow published instructions. However I think you do not appreciate that the same instructions may be accomplished differently in different labs. Basically what you are saying is that one cannot put every last procedural step into a paper and that is why you have to rely on your readers having a foundation of pre-existing technical experience to fill in the gaps. But every lab has its own traditions and ways of doing things -- and as different investigators fill in the gaps in their own way, slightly different procedures may result even if the same instructions are followed to the letter.
I asked if you or Mizuno could think of unreported changes in procedure that were made early on in the ramp-up from marginal success to the large COP presently reported. You replied that if you had anything to suggest along those lines you would have included them in your paper. But I am pretty sure that there are lots of things done in Mizuno's lab that are done differently than in other labs. Differences that are not appreciated right now and cannot be addressed by simply assuming a common technical background between you and your readers. Will these differences be crucial? Maybe. But maybe right now is too soon to ask about this. If there is a continued run of negative results from replicators, then I guarantee this is exactly what you will be asking yourself.
Two effective ways of dealing with the issue of differences in technique between different labs ...
1) Have someone from lab A actually work for a while lab B (this is what I suggested as the standard move used in academic research to transfer knowledge)
2) Video the procedure from stem to stern. I notice the Deneum group asking for this.