Refreshing to be called 'someone' for a change :)
Q: Any plans to create an 'unofficial' thunder backdoor login, that doesn't need to be administrator or count against license limitations?
A: Yes, we're planning it for Sitefitny 5.1, the next major release.
In the meantime I suggest you uncheck the 'upload on save' so you manually need to push to your production environment instead of it continually blocking administrator access on the SBE...
FYI: Attached is a screenshot from the Sitefinity Explorer, top left is the toggle 'connect/disconnect' button.