I built my outdoor kitchen extension exclusively from Bunnings products. The deck is finger jointed Merbau, and the benchtop is Merbau panels glued and screwed from underneath the bench carcass. The deck timber was pre-oiled when I purchased it. My plan is to leave it as is for a few months before washing it with some deck wash and then coating it with Cabot's Aquadeck Natural. Hopefully this will get it to better match the older deck the new one is attached to. I used Cabot's Natural Decking Oil on the benchtop and I've had no problem with heat from the oven. I placed a thermometer under it once, and it got to 38 degrees celsius. This was on a 30 degree day.
My previous kitchen was much more exposed than it is now and was that way for seven years before I extended my pergola. The section with the barbecue in it is my old kitchen added on to the new bench at the back with the pizza oven. I can tell no difference until I open a door and the black is a bit more faded on the older cabinets that were built from secondhand timber.
I built the kitchen on top of the deck rather than building the deck around the kitchen. There are four 250mm long bugle head screws spaced out on the bottom of the cabinets into the decking to hold them from moving around as I had nowhere to fix them through the back of the cabinets.
I framed between the posts with 70 x 45 treated Pine to give the posts a slight reveal and covered in blue board ready for the 40 sheets of tiles that give it a more high-end look. I painted a cheap secondhand bar fridge with a rattle can, dropped in a sink, connected the tap and ran a powerpoint and lights.
I lined the bottom and sides where the barbecue sits with cement sheeting in the same way you would line walls and then tile over. You have to remember to allow for the thickness of the sheet when building the cabinets so the barbecue can still drop in. I only painted the front edge of the cement sheet where I would see it – I didn't want to paint the whole sheet because of the heat, and didn't use any type of sealant at all. I've only used a couple of screws to hold the sheet on and overlapped the joints in the corners. The pizza oven has plastic spacer legs on each corner raising it about 25mm off the bench.
The cabinets are all made from form ply that's normally used for concreting – a fraction of the price compared to marine ply, and with a coat of paint you wouldn't know the difference. I painted with a Colorbond colour called Monument. Because form ply is usually used to hold wet concrete, it's strong and doesn't mind getting wet. Although I did have to scuff up the surface a bit to get the paint to stick to it. The end of the cabinets (you can see on the left side of the photo above) are 90mm Pine decking boards nailed vertically on the end board of the cabinet.
I bought the louvres ready-made from Bunnings. You buy as many louvres as you need and then side panels hold them in place. I think both the louvres and the side panels are 2400mm long and you cut them to length. If you want them to pivot like mine so you can close them, use pivot ends (can be bought in a pack of four). The end panels also come in non-pivot and the louvres sit permanently at a 45 degree angle.
More outdoor kitchen projects
Inspired by Darryl's project, Workshop member Mooky shared their own outdoor kitchen build.
Workshop member Paul extended his alfresco area to include an awning, deck and incredible outdoor kitchen.