I'm going to order 6 15 gal plastic fermenters and give them a try.
Six. That sounds more like a commitment than a trial
Well, yeah I guess it sort of is. I'm going to try these http://www.plastic-mart.com/product/5790/15-gallon-cone-inductor-tank-in0015-19
For about $80 a piece, 6 is going to run me around $500 and I can't get a single stainless for that from what I've found.
My plan is to build a small room in my new shop with a window shaker air conditioner to keep it around 50F. That'll be fairly easy for much of the year here. I want to put two of these in this cold room for doing lagers. I'm also planning to use the room to store grain. I have a freezer that I use today for a keezer that I will use for lagering instead.
Another 2 will be in the main area. I make a lot of pale ales, saisons, british styles and wheat beers so I thought I'd use two of these in rotation for ales. The other two I was just going to keep in storage because I have no idea how long these will last without scratching etc. They come from Iowa and I'm going to be there in a month or so and I figured since I'm driving back, I may as well grab a couple extra cause it's worth it not to have to ship them even though I realize I'm tying $160 up in fermenters that I may not need for a year or two. My experience with pails has been that I get about 12-18 months out of them before I end up scratching them somehow. I did also consider designating one for pale ales only, one for saisons only, one for sours only etc but that may be over kill.