Hard Knocks Type III Wall Vinyl Installation

Hard Knocks wall vinyl installation

Installation Guide

Instructions for the installation of our Hard Knocks, Flex Type III wall vinyl.


Like other building products the successful use of vinyl wall covering requires that it be selected, installed, used, and maintained in compliance with these instructions. You must read and understand all these instructions prior to installing vinyl wall covering.

If you have any questions seek advice from an experienced building professional before proceeding. These instructions supersede and replace all prior instructions.

Moisture Elimination, Permeability and Mould

Surfaces to be covered should be smooth, clean, well-sealed and dry. Wall moisture content should not exceed 4%.

Hard Knocks is intended for use only in temperature-controlled environments.  It must be installed at a constant temperature between 16° C. and 29° C.  This constant temperature must be maintained 24 hours-a-day for a minimum of 48 hours before, during and after installation. 

Hard Knocks should not be transported at temperatures exceeding 32° C.  and should be stored at temperatures between 10° C and 32° C.  Hard Knocks should be acclimated in the area in which it will be installed for a minimum of 6 days prior to installation.

Lay out work to be completed, including all component work.  Check material for any damage that may have incurred during shipment and / or handling at job site.

Preparation of Surface

The minimum gypsum board finish is a level 4 per GA-214 published by the Gypsum Association and endorsed by AWCI, PDCA, GA, and CISCA, although a level 5 finish is preferred.  Follow with a good quality pigmented acrylic wall covering primer for a proper installation and product performance. 

Sand smooth any stipple or brush marks left from the primers.

New Plaster

Allow wall to completely cure for 60 to 90 days. Walls should be checked with a suitable moister metre.  Moisture content should not exceed 4%.  Follow with a good quality pigmented acrylic wall covering primer for a proper installation and product performance. Sand smooth any stipple or brush marks left from the primers.

Painted Surface

The resilience of moisture must be tested. With a wet sponge or cloth, hold directly on the painted surface for a few seconds and then wipe vigorously with a sponge or cloth. If no paint is removed, the paint is sound. The paint is moisture sensitive if any amount is removed. Moisture sensitive paint should be sanded or washed with ammonia to remove the paint. The surface should then be primed with a good quality pigmented acrylic wall covering primer. Sand smooth any stipple or brush marks left from the primers.

Existing Walls

Glossy surfaces should either be sanded to dull the surface, or a heavy-duty primer should be applied to the wall surface. All surface imperfections should be repaired and sanded to a smooth level.


Hard Knock rolls are numbered and should be installed in reverse order, with highest numbered roll being installed first. The material should be cut to the desired sizes in the order in which the pieces will be hung.  Lay the material flat in a room in which the temperature is a minimum of 16° C for 24 hours prior to installation to eliminate any flat spots that may have developed while the product was in storage. Reverse hang alternate pieces of Hard Knocks in sequence according to the numbers on the back of the material as they are cut from the bolt. Hard Knocks can also be railroaded.


  • Apply a uniform coat of heavy duty, clay-based vinyl wall covering adhesive to the wall surface. Allow the adhesive to dry to the touch.
  • Apply a uniform layer of mildew-inhibiting adhesive to the back of the material using a trowel or a heavy-duty paint roller. Do not use a pasting machine. Fold each piece of Hard Knocks over and allow 10 to 15 minutes booking time to allow the adhesive to be absorbed into the material. 
  • A laser level or plumb line should be used to ensure a quality installation and appearance. Within 15 minutes of the adhesive being absorbed into the material, install Hard Knocks onto the wall surface.  Use a flexible wallcovering smoother wrapped with a clean soft, cloth to remove air and excessive adhesive pockets from behind the material. outside edges.
  • Trim material at the ceiling, baseboard, windows, and doors with single edged razor blade (change blades often).
  • Several Hard Knock pattern textures appearance is optimal when butt seamed. 
  • The installer should decide the best method to cut the material.
  • When installing dimensional textures, trim the edge of the dimensional element from the bottom of the texture.
  • If overlapping and double cutting, change blades often.
  • Do not cut pieces of Hard Knocks narrower than 40.64cm
  • When applying Hard Knocks around corners, use a minimum of 20.32cm in both directions from the corner. Tools such as a hair dryer can be used to soften Hard Knocks.
  • When trimming cove base and ceilings, it is recommended a broad knife be used versus a straight edge.
  • Remove residual adhesive immediately with a sponge and clean, warm water. Dry with a soft, lint free cloth.

Date: March 2023