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Non Standard Size Cooktop Replacement

I have an existing 32" electric cooktop, hate it and want to replace with a gas unit. My cutout is exactly 31 3/8" x 19", i.e. too small for all 36" cooktops currently sold. One mfg, GE, makes units 33 7/8" cutout width with rectangular sheet metal enclosure below the counter top. I think I may be able to customize the enclosure by reducing it's size if it doesn't interfere with functional components that's can't be relocated. I understand this will not be condoned by manufacturers but no one is making a 32" gas cooktop and there is only one electric 32" unit similar to the one I have installed now. Simply enlarging cutout is not an easy option as the structural members under the stainless steel counter top would be compromised and the existing cutout has an folded over vertical edge which contributes to the counter top strength. Bottom line is which 36" gas cooktop can I modify most easily ? Am trying to get design prints on several different units to determine feasibility

Re: Non Standard Size Cooktop Replacement

May be too tough to do. I'd like to see it done, if feasible.

If I were in your shoes, I'd stay with an electric cooktop. Don't forget that to introduce a gas cooktop you'll need a new gas line. For a new gas line, you'll need a permit and an inspector sign off.

Re: Non Standard Size Cooktop Replacement

Thanks dj1 for your reply, I will post details when it's done. A P Wagner, the ****** appliance parts store, has a "See inside your appliance" feature on their web site that provides some detail, not blueprints. It appears that most all current cooktops except Fridigaire use flat sheet metal enclosures that could be cut down easilly. Fridigaire is ruled out as they use a stamped metal pan that would be difficult. Using Wagner's diagrams I can screen for a candidate that will permit the size reduction. Before buying of course I'll physically inspect the candidate to confirm that all essential components are either within the needed space envelope or can be safely relocated. Visits to Lowes, Home Depot, Sears, etc to do this. Units with center mounted controls will probably be best. As far as the gas line is concerned, one already exists from some earlier installation, house is 54 years old. All this has to be a DIY effort due to labor costs and more essentially no contractor will touch altering an appliance's design and incurring product safety liability issues. All the cabinetry below the cooktop is metal and behind the cabinets is a brick wall -- no combustible anything anywhere.

Re: Non Standard Size Cooktop Replacement

I think your approaching this from the opposite view, as a sheet metal artisian, I would do my modifications on the countertop and drop in the existing size cooktop available. With the right tools that opening could be modified and the cutoffs used to reinforce the weakened edges. If welding is not an option then High strenght silver bearing solder can be used with the right flux to reattach pieces.

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