I think that with this the game is just see how much sugar you can ferment without getting the fermentation stuck. You're probably talking over $100 of malt per batch of 5 gallons. You can substitute corn sugar to 20% of the batch for some cost savings that will have little affect on flavor. You can go more than that but it won't be beer anymore.
I haven't played with this strain yet, though I would like to. In the end, it's fun to make this stuff as a hobby, but in the long run it's much cheaper to just go to the liquor store. You'll spend way more on ingredients, equipment and time making it yourself. But you will have the satisfaction of having done it yourself and getting the exact flavors you prefer. That's the reason I got into homebrew.
you will only get about half a gallon of shine from a five gallon run
thats not true
I get a quart of heads and 2 sometimes 3 quarts of tails off every run
Not to mention the 4 or 6 quarts that come up for me and I run 5 gallons everytime.
Either you need to work on your design or you might want to try a different recipe
It's perfectly legal to make wine. It's the distilling the wine into brandy that is the problem.
You can buy all the distilling equipment you like though. Just tell them you are distilling your own water.
I still say, unless you are making something like 1000 gallon batches out of pure corn sugar, it's cheaper to go to the liquor store. And if you buy that much corn sugar, the ATF will be knocking on your door. If you do it for fun, well then have at you!