A review of what works, what doesn't and how much elbow grease is required seems to be the point of this thread. If anyone isn't interested in the progress of those of us who have this same problem, don't follow this thread.
Let's keep trying..... and keep researching....
I put one of my burnt on grease bon chef pans (acquired pre-burnt from a closing restarant sale) into my oven for 1 hour at 500 degrees (hottest it'll go before self-cleaning mode). It had a little effect on easing the scouring process, but not much... I will probably try it again, for a longer time. I do suspect that the self-cleaning process itself would damage the pans, and, besides, I won't leave my ss grid/shelves in the oven during the cleaning cycle or they'll likely turn blue & / or warp.