Slatwall Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are the stocked slatwall products?

  2. What is the difference between stock cut and vertical cut slatwall?

  3. What are the standard cuts? What are the typical options to the standard cuts?

  4. How do metal inserts enhance the panels?

  5. How much does a panel weigh?

  6. Crating, shipping, pick-up information

  7. How are the panels installed?

  8. What are the typical lead times?

  9. What is the best way to paint the panels?

  10. Are there any minimum orders?

  11. Installation Instructions

Answer to 1

What are the stocked slatwall products?

Paint Grade (customer paints panel); Stock Laminates In stock - White, Grey, Maple

Other finishes- Sierra Maple, Alum Rock Maple, Windsor Anigre, Red Oak, Birch, Mirror Acrylic, Brushed Aluminum.

Slatwall panels come standard 8' W x 4' H, panels are 3" on center. – grooves in the 8’ direction.

Approximate Load Strength

Painted Grooves

Normal Duty 36 lbs.
With PVC Insert Strips Normal Duty 36 lbs.
With Color Snaps Normal Duty 36 lbs.
With Rigid Vinyl Insert Medium Duty 45 lbs.
With Metal Insert Heavy Duty 78 lbs


Answer to 2

What is the difference between stock cut and vertical cut slatwall?

Stock cut slatwall is the standard cut (grooves in the long, or typically 8’ direction). Vertical cut slatwall panels run the grooves in the 4’, or short direction. This requires a small upcharge, because the slatwall panels need to be machined differently. This can also extend the lead time slightly.

You can also order panels 4" on center or 6" on center for a small price per panel.



Answer to 3

What are the standard cuts? What are the typical options to the standard cuts?

The standard cut is the 3" o.c. (on center - distance between the grooves) – 4’ x 8’ grooves in the 8’, or long direction. Typical optional cuts include: 4" o.c., 6"o.c.



Answer to 4

How do metal inserts enhance the slatwall panels?

Not only do the metal inserts make the slatwall panels stronger, they also enhance the looks of the grooves. Metal inserts are available in: mill aluminum, The metal inserts are an extruded 6061 or 3003 wrought aluminum. Metal inserts need to be installed at the factory. The grooves are cut slightly larger to accept metal inserts. To gain the maximum strength the panels should be glued and screwed to the stud-wall. The screws should be driven through the metal insert into the back of the groove and stud-wall to achieve maximum strength. Screws should be driven every 9 inches vertically and on each stud, or furring strip horizontally (recommended 16" centers).



Answer to 5

How much does a slatwall panel weigh?

4’ x 8’ slatwall panels cut in the standard 3" o.c. weigh approximately 80 pounds each.



Answer to 6

Crating, shipping, pick-up information?

Unless the panels are picked up, there is a $25 crating and handling charge for panel orders under a quantity of 20. The crating charge does not apply to panel quantity orders of 20 and over. For crating purposes, the panels are placed on a skid with the corners and edges protected for shipment via common carrier. Slatwall panels typically ship Class 55. Note: The truckers typically do not help unload shipments.



Answer to 7

How are the panels installed?

Install over existing plaster or drywall onto studs - wood, or metal. The dry wall backing does provide some added strength to the panels – installing directly onto studs should be for applications that do not require maximum load carrying capacities). Panel adhesive is recommended for more permanent installations. Drywall screws of the proper length work the best. Drive the screws through the backs of the groove (be careful not to damage the groove lips). For maximum load level capacities, screws should be driven through every other groove (9 inches apart vertically) and at each stud, or furring strip (recommended 16" centers). Cutting to size should be done with the blade entering the grooved side of the panel. This will help to avoid "chip-out." Follow the mounting instructions shown on the back of the panels.



Answer to 8

What are the typical lead times?

Stock panels ship typically in under two weeks (often in a week, or less). The custom panels can take two to three weeks depending on the design and materials vendor.



Answer to 9

What is the best way to paint the panels?

The factory painted panels are produced using an acrylic waterbased paint applied approximately 2 – 4 mls. thick (depending on the color – black is a lacquer finish). These finishes meet all the EPA requirements and cure in approximately 24 to 36 hours. Other epoxy and latex finishes are available on request. Grooves are finished with an acrylic lacquer tinted to customer specifications. Panels typically require a primer coat, a light sanding sealer, and then a finish coat. If you are painting the panels yourself, standard brushes and rollers work fine. Painting the grooves by hand is a time consuming project and should be attacked with a small brush. A specialized paint gun nozzle is used in the factory to paint the grooves.



Answer to 10

Are there any minimum orders?

There are no minimum orders, however keep freight and crating costs in mind.

Installation Instructions for Slatwall Planks

Statements expressed in this technical bulletin are the recommendations for the application of Slatwall products as outlined and illustrated under normal conditions of installation. The recommendations provided in the bulletin represent our best judgment based on our experience with normal applications. Unless prior approval is obtained in writing any deviation from these recommended procedures shall be at the sole risk of the installers. Carefully inspect all panels. If a panel is defective, notify the service center nearest you at once. Failure to do so shall be at the sole risk of the installer.

Important! Read complete instructions carefully before you begin application.

Tools Required: You will need regular carpenter tools for installation, primarily a hammer, 10 or 12 point saw, level, block plane, sanding block, drill and nail set. You will need mineral spirits to clean up adhesive.

Open Carton(s): Carefully inspect all panels. Due to texture and manufacturing techniques, some panels may vary in color consistency and pattern. Planks must be stored in a dry environment.

If material is found to be defective, notify the service center nearest you at once. Failure to do so shall be at the sole risk of the installer.

Before installation, arrange the planks on each wall to achieve the best combination of color and pattern and make sure the end planks are of equal width for a balanced appearance.

Conditioning: The planks should be allowed to equalize to the moisture in the room environment prior to installation. This is accomplished by standing them separately on their short edges around the room in which they are to be installed for at least 48 hours before application.

Important! Regarding High Humidity Areas: Slatwall plank is a man-made wood fiber product and is subject to the effects of moisture. It may be used in bathrooms, but DO NOT USE IN SINK, TUB OR SHOWER AREAS.

Cleaning: is easily cleaned with a soft, slightly damp cloth and a mild soap or ammonia rich liquid cleaner.

Installation Tips

  • Installation should begin and end in an inside corner wherever possible.
  • If remodeling, remove all base molding.
  • Always cut planks face up with a fine-toothed hand saw (10-12 point) or face down with a rotary power saw (carbide tipped blade) to assure a clean-cut edge.
  • Note: For grid plank, always consider the horizontal groove alignment before cutting.
  • Never nail through the top or bottom of planks.
  • Always allow room for expansion when installing plank.
  • Install the planks with the tongue side facing toward predominate direction of view for the best visual effect.

Wall Preparation

Structural walls should be finished with building completely closed. Walls should be thoroughly dry before planks are applied.

New Construction

Masonry Walls: (Includes all exterior masonry, concrete block, cinder block, etc.) Walls must be thoroughly dry and waterproofed inside and out before plank application. Planks should never be applied directly to any such wall, exterior or otherwise.

Important! When installing Slatwall planks in below-grade applications or over new concrete block construction, it is recommended that a vapor barrier first be installed over walls to discourage warping due to humidity and/or temperature variation.


Slatwall planks may be applied with adhesive directly to walls of drywall or plywood, which are solid and straight. Remove any high spots. Level low spots with patching plaster or scraps or wood. Backs of planks and wall must be free from dirt, dust, and grease before installation. Remove scaling paint and wallpaper. Protect existing surfaces with drop cloths and pads.

Wipe walls with a clean dry cloth to remove construction dust and any loose dirt.

Installation Steps for Planks

Wall layout: Measure wall(s) to be finished. Preplan a balanced plank layout. Avoid ending with a narrow width of plank in the corner.

Step 1. Nail temporary 1” x 2” level starter strips at floor height that base molding will conceal. Planks will rest on this strip during installation.

Step 2. Find first vertical joint. Mark plumb line 1/8” beyond center of first tongue and groove joint.

Step 3. Dry-fit in position. Be sure openings are cut for electrical outlets, plumbing, etc.

Step 4. Adhesive Application

Always apply Slatwall C-375 Adhesive to the back of the panel. Be sure the existing subwall is porous, straight, clean and dry such as drywall or plywood. Each five gallon can of adhesive will cover 300 square feet. Adhesive is easiest to spread at 70°F. Planks must be installed while adhesive is fresh (within 10 minutes). Adhesive on plank face should be removed promptly with mineral spirits.

Apply adhesive to the entire back of plank using notched spreader provided. (100% coverage over entire back of plank except approximately 1” at edges.) Use the notches in the spreader to get the exact depth of adhesive. Avoid too heavy a coat. To assure proper ridges when spreading, keep notches of spreader clean by placing spreader in a pail of water when not in use.

Hint: Pouring a layer of water on top of Slatwall C-375 in the can keeps adhesive fresh, reduces solvent odor, extends open time and aids in cleaning the spreader.

Cohesive Technique: For faster bonding, use C-375 and the following cohesive technique to ensure trouble-free installation.

  • Apply thin skin coat of C-375 adhesive to the wall using the flat edge of the spreader, and allow to skin over (approximately 10-15 minutes).
  • Apply adhesive to the panel back.
  • Apply plank to the wall. Fan the plank by pressing and pulling it from the wall. This releases the adhesive solvents and allows the adhesive to set up more quickly. Press the plank firmly to the wall from top to bottom. Check to see that it is plumb.


 Cartridge Adhesive: If using adhesive cartridges C-376, you must apply in a serpentine pattern. Apply a 1/4” bead around the entire perimeter and then snake down the panel every 4” to 6”. Coverage: 30 lin. feet per 10 oz. cartridge.

Note: For grid plank, check horizontal groove alignment and vertical tongue and groove spacing (approx. 3/16”).

Metal Clip Application

Step 5. Easy Clip Application

Clips must be used for two reasons:

1. To help insure expansion space in the tongue and groove joint.

2. To hold plank in place until glue dries.

When plank is in position, place the metal clip over the lip of groove edge and nail through holes in the clips. Go to the next plank and repeat steps 3, 4 and 5.

Note: to prevent moisture from getting to the back side of the plank, it is recommended that all moldings be sealed with Slatwall Silicone Sealant. This will discourage swelling of the plank due to excess moisture used in cleaning. To clean off excess silicone from plank use mineral spirits.

Fitting Inside Corner Plank

1. When installation has progressed to first inside corner, cut the last plank 1/8” less than the final measurement. To cut excess from plank, place plank face up and cut with a fine tooth (10-12 point) hand saw or face down with a rotary power saw.

2. Apply the last plank, and engage tongue and groove joint leaving 1/8” space for plank expansion. Seal molding if required.

3. Turning The Corner: Continue by nailing the inside corner molding into next vertical wall.

4. Install the first plank of the new wall leaving 1/16” space in the molding channel for horizontal expansion.

Horizontal Applications

1. Cut the last plank 1/16” short of outside corner.

2. Nail outside corner molding in place.

Ending In A Corner

(Where installation will not continue onto next wall)

1. Nail edge molding in place and apply sealant.

2. Take the measurement for the last plank from edge molding to the face edge of next to last plank.

3. Cut the last plank 1/8” less than this measurement.

4. After dry-fitting for position, apply adhesive and insert all the way into molding, past the groove. Then move the plank back out to engage the tongue and groove joint and allow proper spacing.

Above Tile Base

1. Nail edge molding in place.

2. Apply sealant in and behind molding.

3. Install plank.

Base Molding

1. Remove 1” x 2” starter strip that has held plank up off floor at proper height.

2. Apply 1/4” thick filler strip under plank leaving a space between bottom of plank and molding. Filler strip can be held in place by applying C-375 adhesive.

3. Fasten base molding by nailing below plank. DO NOT NAIL THROUGH PLANK.

Applying Wood Moldings

Use #4 penny finishing nails and pre-drill all holes. It is recommended that all nail holes are filled with color matched putty once molding is in place. DO NOT NAIL THROUGH PLANK.