I've done a lot of messing around with node merging in the last couple of weeks (been playing a lot of Mage Quest and Regrowth) and I've found a couple of idiosyncrasies with the process.
First off, the closer nodes are to each other, the more often they interact. Two nodes two spaces away from each other will interact more often than two nodes at maximum distance from each other. Secondly, it appears that the bully node can gain a point of an aspect without draining that point from the donor node. I'm not exactly positive how this works, but I believe it's draining the bonus aspects that are granted by placing crystal clusters around the donor node.
I like to use the 7x7 pattern lay out (5 nodes, with the bully in the center) combined with Automagy to drain all of the aspect points from the donors.
What I do is pretty simple: I put a remote comparator on top of a vis reader. I set that vis reader to output "Any Low" of the nodes aspect. This will generate a signal from 15 (full) to 0 (empty). I then place a piece of dense red crystal between the vis reader and the node stabilizer. Since the node stabilizer will retract it's shield when a redstone signal is applied, I set the dense red crystal to block any strength signal except for the 15.
This means that if the node's lowest aspect is reading full strength it will pass through the dense red crystal and the signal will hit the stabilizer and the shield will go down allowing for it to be drained.
This process can take a VERY long time, but you will get every single point of vis from the donor nodes into the bully this way.
Observing hungry nodes, I suspect that:
1. Node events are probably based of the minecraft random tick mechanisim. So, node bullying and recharging can be accelerated with tick accelerators such as the Twilight Forest Tree of Time. I was testing this but that world got deleted accidentally :/ so I am not sure.
2. Each tick, a node has to choose what to do, recharge, bully (be bullied) or destroy terrain (if hungry). This means you could potentially slow down the rate of certain events by making other events available - i.e. draning a hungry/bully node might make it prefer to recharge.
3. Bully events are mediated by the bully node. There are several kinds of potential bully events that are all independent. A bully node can choose to (a) recharge an aspect that is not at 100%, (b) increase the max capacity of an aspect, (c) drain a point of an aspect from a victim node or (d) drain a point of max capacity from a victim node.
4. The chance of a bully event is not proportional to the number of nearby victim nodes, but it is inversely proportional to the nearness of the victim nodes. These two statements nominally seem to conflict so perhaps the bully node just adjusts its bully rate based on the closest victim. So, to maximise bullying you might want to make a 6x6x6 room, with the "center" node actually directly (diagonally) adjacent to a corner node.
I am not sure of these, they just form my current working hypothesis.