Just wanted to throw my build out there in case there is anyone who is wanting to go electric, but cant quite swing the cost.
My story begins with a very successful 2011 Fantasy Football Season, where I won about $750 total. Top on my list of things to blow hard earned money on was a new Brew Rig. Living in WI meant a top priority was being able to brew year round, and having an open area in the basement meant i was going Electric. Where does everyone go to check out Electric Brewing? Why, theelectricbrewery.com
Kal has crafted a fantastic brew rig, let alone a fantastic site with great info. But the pricetag.... wow. Don't get me wrong, the rig is worth every penny and is built to the highest standards... but I just couldn't afford spending all of my cash on only half of a control panel.
So what's a guy to do? Beg, Borrow, and Steal. Not to mention a close analysis of what were the most important CTQs (Critical To Quality, for you non Six Sigma folks) and how could I make them all work for half the cost.
Below is what I came up with. 12x12x6 PVC Junction Box for the enclosure. Scrounged and re-purposed as many parts as possible, (understanding this isn't always possible for everyone, I still included their value as part of the overall cost). Only used 2 PIDs to cut costs. Used cheaper "Box Mount" receptacles instead of the fancier "Flange Mount". I designed every aspect of the build with cost as a major driver, (i.e. a $15 illuminated switch is cool, but a separate $2 pilot light and $4 switch will work fine), etc etc.
I have sourcing lists and links for those interested in the nitty gritty. Again, I am wholly impressed with what others have done, especially the genesis of all of these rigs, Kal's. I just couldn't afford the level of build that he was able to pull off.
More pics to come when the entire brewery is up and running.