Are there any low cost (less than $150) solutions to add temperature control to an electric HLT? My setup is a keg with a 5500W water heater element. I love how quickly it brings 15 gallons to boiling (less than 1hr), but it's a bit of a hassle to get the temperature I want.
I know I probably need to be re-circulating to make the temperature consistent, which I can do, but I'm curious if there are some options. I've looked over the instructions at www.theelectricbrewery.com, which is amazing and wonderful, but the cost for the PID, SSR, heat sink, and temperature probe comes out to about $120 before shipping or tax, and without accounting for misc connector and cable costs, let alone any box to contain it all.
Also, running my boil kettle (exact same setup) at 100% is my only option right now, which requires me to have my large fan running over it to keep from boiling over, and I'm not sure if that'll work once summer rolls around. Will one temperature control setup work for both?
Is anyone else working creatively in this realm?