The steps in this project will allow you to build a basic outdoor cooking area.
Ever since outdoor barbecuing became popular in the 1950s, the technology of grills and accessories has improved dramatically. If you've never left the outdoor cooking craze or are thinking about joining it for the first time, installing an outdoor kitchen requires some planning.
The scope of an outdoor cooking area is best determined by answering the question ?How do I want to use it?? You may want a place for full-scale outdoor dining, for small gatherings of family or a few guests, or merely for occasional weekend cookouts.
An outdoor kitchen requires a structure to house a grill. The unit illustrated here does so with little cost and effort. You can add a prep sink, under-the-counter refrigerator, rotisserie, and any number of storage areas by building additional bays.
24 to 30 hours
Framing hammer, measuring tape, framing square, speed square, cordless drill, circular saw, carpenter's level, chalk line
Measuring, sawing, fastening
2x4 framing lumber, siding, cement backerboard, 1x trim stock, fasteners
Cut all the framing members to length and lay out the pieces for the left wall on the deck. Put them in their approximate positions so you'll have them handy when you need them. Assemble the corner posts for this wall first, inserting 6-inch lengths of 2x4 between the corner post studs and driving 3-1/2-inch screws from both sides. Line up the bottom plate and face-nail it to the studs, spacing them correctly. Face-nail the top plate to the studs, keeping the studs properly spaced and square in the frame. Assemble all the walls in this fashion.
Snap chalk lines on the deck to locate the positions of the walls. Make sure the footprint of the frame is square to the deck. Square the corners with a framing square. Set the left wall on its chalk line and fasten one end of the bottom plate to the decking by driving 3-inch screws into the bottom plate. Line the bottom plate up on the chalk line and fasten the other end. Then go back and secure the middle of the bottom plate.
Fasten the remaining walls to the deck with the same techniques, pulling the walls together with screws through the rear studs into the corner posts. Cut the front frame members and toenail them in place. Measure and cut the plywood countertop base and fasten it to the frame. Cut and fasten plywood for the remaining top plates and the shelves. Line the grill bay with cement backerboard. Install the siding, tile the countertop and top plates, and install the grill.