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Building & Using 356 Support Boxes

September 26, 2010 | Troubleshooting & Repair

By Rink Reinking


I have found it useful to have four "boxes" to support my car while working under it performing various suspension measurements and maintenance work. I decided to construct them from ordinary 2x6 lumber and plywood. Here are detailed instructions for making these boxes.

Constructing 356 Support Boxes

Click here for diagrams
(Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader>

Cut 1/2" plywood* (or strandboard* or waffleboard*) into 4 pieces each 12" by 24". Cut 2x6 lumber into 8 pieces, each 24" long. Cut 2x6 lumber into 12 pieces, each 9" long. Obtain screws, construction adhesive and paint if desired. A power screwdriver with a cross-point bit is very useful. A coarse wood file, power sander or sanding drum mounted on a drill motor can help make finishing easier.

Place two long and three short pieces of the cut 2x6 in the arrangement shown in the diagram. Hold together with bungie cord or clamps. Pre-drill holes for 3" long cross-point (Phillips) head "deck screws" or similar.

Using "liquid nails" or a similar construction adhesive, coat the contacting surfaces, and then screw the base together. Wipe off excess construction adhesive.

Fit the plywood top and pre-drill for 1-1/2" long cross-point head "deck screws" or similar. Coat the contacting surfaces with construction adhesive, and then screw the top onto the base. Wipe off excess construction adhesive.

Allow sufficient time for the construction adhesive to cure, and then paint if desired.


You can attach a "cleat" to each end of the top of each box to help prevent the car from rolling. These can be made from two 12" long pieces of 2x4, glued and screwed through the plywood, into the 2x6 end pieces of each box.

You can make two 2" diameter holes about 4" apart in the end pieces, cutting them top and bottom with a “saber saw" to form a oval shaped cutout. Run a file or sanding drum attachment on a drill motor around the edges to make this look professional. This will make moving the boxes around much easier and really impress your friends.

Cut four pieces of 1/4" plywood into 12" x 12" squares. Sand the edges. These can be used to help settle the suspension, if needed.

Using the Support Boxes

Set the handbrake, put the car in gear then jack up one side or one end of the car at a time. Slip the boxes in place under each tire. Place a sheet of ordinary waxed paper (approximately 12" x12" on the top of the box, directly under the tire. Place a 12" x12" square of 1/4" plywood on the waxed paper. Lower the car onto the plywood/waxed paper sandwich. The suspension will settle by sliding the plywood over the waxed paper.

Information on plywood, strandboard and waffleboard.