Yaarrgh! That was my first suggestion!
When choosing a speed controller, they'll specify temporary and constant load. The limitation is cooling, if you make sure it's well cooled you should be in good shape.
The reason servo controllers have been on my brain lately is because I've been thinking of the possibilities it provides for motorizing various little doors and cabinets in the cabin of the car. A control panel with a Trunk Monkey or 'Ejection Seat' button it that raises out of the console dramatically....
lol @ dramatically....
You luxury car guys!!
Would you even need servo control to 'pop' something open? Just a digital out to a relay/solenoid would work I'd think...
Looking at some of the 'cheaper' ESC, they come with a one piece heatsink...should be easy to swap.
I'm sure I could do the hardware on this, but as far as working it from Centrafuse, I'm a total retard...
A relay/solenoid would make it pop out indeed. But a servo means you get the full effect of it slowly rising out like something you'd see in a movie villain's lair. If you're going to do something, you've got to do it with style.
Most of the ESCs I've bought (I have 3 or 4 I think) have been a small PCB wrapped in a piece of heatshrink tubing. For the loads you're thinking, one with a big heatsink would be necessary for sure. The robot crowd needs beefy speed controllers, you might be able to find something cheap through ze google.
Regarding HVAC control, a friend of mine uses one of these USB temp sensors and loves it:
Or w/ humidity sensor too, great indicator that it's time to toggle the A/C on:
Might be a great option for folks who don't want to take the Phidget route for just one thing.