You see, it seems that many modern battery charges are equipped with some kind of polarity protection (or some such nonsense). This prevented the chargers (2 different ones) I purchased from providing current to my rust removal system. Presumably they wanted a battery at the end of the cables.
So after a few curses I asked for advice from a robot-building friend familiar with chargers and the dark magic of electricity. He recommended a _power supply_. While the goal of a battery charger is to fully charge a battery then turn off, a power supply will churn out electrons so long as it's plugged in.
So a trip to Gateway Electronics and $50 later (which yielded a 14V 5A power supply, some wires, clips, a cheap soldering iron and solder) I was in business.
Anyway, I would highly recommend getting one of them power supplies if you're looking to remove rust. That is if you don't have an old battery charger and are left having to buy a new-fangled one.
Here's a link describing electrolytic rust removal in detail:
and one for Google: