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  1. Thanks - most all of these units do have side vents from what I've seen. A lot of them have the shelves built in to the body - but the link photo you posted is exactly what I envisioned - just working around the ventilation and side shelves/wings. The form factor with big chunky shelves is probably easiest to build something around. (see attached pics) Not necessarily these - but similar. Of course the surrounds can be made of hardi board. I built a hardi board island with built in grill back in the 90s and used aluminum angle iron and a pop rivet gun for the entire frame and box as a single unit. It was simple and easy. Clamp, drill holes, and pop! These days I'd rather just buy something that's plug-n-play but can't find anything reasonable that's a built in look but runs on NG and is delivered.
  2. Given the high cost components of custom islands we're looking at alternative solutions. Any reason why this wouldn't work? Use a store bought grill - build two flanking box frames on either side (see attached pic) - which allow it to roll into place with a fairly tight fit. The inner wall of the frames wouldn't even need a panel, thus leaving it open air to the entire inside. This is intended to go up against a pre-plumbed wall (see pic) measuring just under 8' long. The gap on the diagram behind is due to a NG pipe and the lid clearance - which would require space anyway unless maybe doing fully built-in. If it looks bad because it doesn't go all the way back flush to the wall, we could add a small metal grate/grille and/or backsplash to fill it. Originally, my thought was to remove the side "wings" from one of these grills to make an even tighter fit - but I started to think they are probably designed with the wings for heat dissipation clearances - so probably best not to fully enclose one. They don't seem to make these types of grills without the wings. I searched and searched online but couldn't find anyone doing this oddly enough. It seems so simple - just build a surround and slide it in - so why not? We do not want a built in fridge or other things. Just counter. The sink can be stand alone. Or countertop.... The wall behind is cinder block/stucco - there is ventilation above, and the whole area is under cover. Stuccoing the counter/wall base to match would be easy.