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How to Install VJ Board

Everything you need to know in easy-to-follow steps and video guides.

Before you begin…

Acclimatisation of Product Prior to Installation

Intrim VJ Board Pro sheets must be delivered to a building site after the lock-up stage, including all external windows and doors installed, fully roofed and external cladding completed, at least 2 days prior to installation. They should be stored within the building close to where they are to be finally fixed to minimise the impact of the surrounding elements including moisture content, and in order for the sheets to acclimatise.

It is preferable to lie them flat in a low-traffic area for their safety with the top sheet placed upside down to keep the top sheet clean.


Where to Start Installation

If sheeting both ceilings and walls, it is best to fix the ceiling sheets first. This will then set the sheet position for the end walls – it looks best if the ceiling grooves line up with the wall grooves.

Before you begin to install your initial wall or ceiling sheet, you need to plan what Intrim corner mouldings and installation method you intend to use to complete your project.

When sheeting the walls, it is common practice to start installing your initial sheet at an internal or external corner and work around the room from that point.

How to Install VJ Board Pro

Planning & preparation

Ensure you have the required tools and equipment.

Tools and equipment

  • Bubble or laser level
  • Nail gun
  • Tape measure
  • Carpenters pencil
  • Handsaw or an electric circular saw
  • Hand or electric planer
  • Intrim dripless caulking gun
  • Intrim Intense Hold adhesive
  • PVA Wood glue
  • Builders line
  • Dust mask
  • Fixing gun or hammer
  • 38mm long fixing nails or screws
  • Safety glasses or protective eyewear

Step-by-step visual guide for installing VJ Board Pro

1 Measure the height of the wall

To determine what length sheets are required. If we are butting the sheet to the underside of the ceiling or cornice, it is critical we leave a 10mm gap between the bottom of the sheet and the top of the floor to allow for expansion.

2 Measure the length of the wall

To determine how many sheets you require.

3 Cut the number of sheets you require to length

As determined in step 1.

4 Locate the framework in wall

These will be used for fixing points.

5 Work out where the first sheet is going to be installed against the corner

Then apply beads of Intense Hold Adhesive (ADH2) across the back of the sheet at approx. 300mm spacings.

6 Place 10mm packers on the floor

Then install the first sheet by sitting on the packers, pushing the sheet sideways into the corner.

7 Use spirit level

To ensure the sheet is straight.

8 Level the sheet with packers and nail or screw fix in place

Apply pressure over the surface of the sheet to make sure it is adhered firmly to the existing wall surface.

9 Check the plastic tongue is in place on the first sheet installed

These tongues are interchangeable if required.

10 Follow steps 5 to 8

To install the following full sheets.

11 Measure width of last sheet

Allowing 5mm in corner for expansion.

12 Cut to width

Install as per previous sheets.

13 Measure the width of next sheet from internal to external corner

Allowing for a mitre join on the external corner, making sure the v join does not land on the external corner join.

14 Cut to width with mitre

On external corner.

15 Glue and fix into position

As per previous instructions.

16 Measure width of next corner

With mitre on external corner and 5mm gap on internal corner.

17 Glue external corner with PVA wood glue

Install sheet as per previous instructions.

18 Fix and nail in place

Including external corner.

19 Sand corner

To remove the sharp edge.

20 Fill and sand all nail holes

VJ Board wall panelling is ready for painting.

Fixing Intrim VJ Board Pro to Framing

Framing Requirements


  • Maximum spacing of 450mm centres shall apply to all vertical wall framing studs and horizontal frame members, including noggins or trimmers, which shall have a maximum spacing of 600mm centres to support the sheet joins that don’t fall directly on a stud.
  • Where the chair rail is used, a continuous row of framing nogging needs to be provided to allow the fixing of the top of the chair rail, the bottom of the plasterboard and the chair rail.

  • The Intrim VJ Board Pro ceiling sheets must be fixed to subframe members, including ceiling joists, bottom chords and battens, installed at a maximum spacing of 450mm to centrelines.

Information on Fixing

  1. Intrim recommends using Intrim Intense Hold adhesive. These cartridges suit a standard caulking gun. We recommend a continuous bead or spots (20mm diameter x 3mm thick) applied at regular intervals to all framing members, as this minimises vibration in walls. As a guide, approximately ½ tube of Intrim Intense Hold adhesive be used per 2.7m sheet. You may also use an equivalent adhesive available through retail outlets. PVA adhesive is used for gluing corners together and mouldings in place.
  2. Use 38mm finishing nails or screws that won’t rust, and fix to the studs at 600mm intervals and 300mm across the top and bottom of the sheet.
  3. Between each sheet at the join, a space of 0.5mm should be left, and where the sheets meet in the corner a 1mm space must be allowed, to minimise any deformity causing appearance defects in the sheets or at the joins, should there be any structural movement after installation. Never force one sheet into the other as this does not allow for any movement and therefore increases the potential for sheet deformity after installation. When installing sheets in-between 2 walls you must allow a 5mm gap between the edge of the lining board sheet and subsurface, at both ends of the wall, whether that be a timber/metal frame stud/upright or a finished wall surface such as plaster or brick. This 5mm gap will be covered by the lining board sheet that abuts it on the adjacent wall or a finishing bead in the internal corner.
  4. Leave a gap of approx. 10mm at the top and bottom of each sheet to prevent the wicking of water up the sheet and to allow for structural movement.
  5. A 9mm minimum space is required at the top and bottom ends of the sheets to allow for movement (mainly expansion and contraction). It is handy to use 9mm thick packer material (Intrim VJ Board Pro off cuts are great for this use), between the top of the floor surface and bottom end of sheets, to assist with the installation of sheets.
  6. Where you are fixing Intrim VJ Board Pro over the original wall lining e.g. plasterboard or lining boards, it is important to nail or screw the sheets through the original wall lining, into the underlying structural sub-framework and apply a small bead of Intrim Intense Hold adhesive in a diagonal Crisscross formation to the rear face of the sheet you are fixing.


You may use a handsaw or an electric circular saw for cutting Intrim VJ Board Pro wall sheets. We recommend that the rear face of the sheet is positioned in a downward direction when using a handsaw, and the rear face of the sheet is positioned in an upward direction when using an electric circular saw, to minimise chip out, and form a neater finish to the cut edge.

Finishing Options

When completing Intrim VJ Pro Board in ceiling or wall applications, there are several alternatives to choose from. Below are some typical details of our recommended Intrim moulding alternatives for completing the installation of corners and joining ends of sheets. We can help you choose mouldings that best suit your application.

Butt Joint

A butt joint will show the end of the sheet

Mitre Joint

Cut a 45 degree mitre to create a neat finish

Internal & External Corners

Mouldings can be used to cover joins in corners as shown

Internal & External Corners using DAR Stops

Another option is to use a DAR piece as shown

Methods for Finishing

Different Finishing Methods

Finishing an Internal Corner Finishing an External Corner
Method 1

Scribe the second sheet so that it butts neatly up to the existing sheet.

Method 1 — Corner Mould:

Trim the first sheet off level with the outside edge of the corner stud. Start the next sheet level with the outside edge of the trimmed sheet. Cover the join with an external corner timber moulding.

Method 2

Butt-join the corner sheets (leaving a 3-5mm expansion gap) and fit a suitable moulding (e.g. square DAR, scotia, ovolo or quad) to cover any gap between the corner sheets.

It is good practice to always study and measure the walls in a room before commencing the installation to minimise waste.

Method 2 — Butt joint:

  1. Cut the corner sheet 9mm longer than the outside edge of the stud, being careful to cater for any run-out in the vertical plane or bows in the stud.
  2. Scribe the second sheet to the line of the corner stud, again catering for any run-out in the vertical or bows in the stud. This forms a butt joint.
Method 3 — Mitre joint:

  1. Using a router or track saw, form a 45deg bevel down the edge of each sheet. (This angle will vary from 45 if the corner is not a 90 degree right angle).
  2. Fix the first corner sheet.
  3. Apply glue to the length of the join and fix the second corner sheet against the first sheet. This forms a mitre joint.
  4. Allow to thoroughly dry. Fill any gaps and sand smooth.

Safety & Troubleshooting

Recommended safety tips

We highly recommend for your safety that you follow the below steps when installing and working with Intrim VJ Board Pro:

  1. It is important to control the dust that is produced when sawing or routing MDF.
  2. A Class P1 or P2 filter/respirator should be worn to prevent the inhalation of the dust.
  3. Dust should be collected and removed from the work area on a regular basis.
  4. Ideally, hand power tools should be fitted with dust bags.
  5. Keep the work area well-ventilated.
  6. Do not burn offcuts. They should be disposed of as landfill.
  7. Safety glasses or goggles should be worn if dust irritates the eyes.

Can I join sheet end to end to cover taller wall height or longer ceiling length?

It is difficult to achieve a good result when butt-joining a wall or ceiling sheet as expansion and contraction over time will inevitably cause a crack in the join.

There are two options:

  1. Plan to butt join the sheets in a position that can be covered with a timber cover strip e.g. the centre line of the room, in line with an adjoining wall, at the leading end of the hallway etc.
  2. Design a pattern of cover strips (e.g a square) that can be made to look like a feature, then join sheets under these strips.

What paint should I use to prime?

An acrylic sealer undercoat should be applied as the base coat if purchasing or using unprimed sheets.

The back of my sheets are raw, do I need to prime them?

Only if the sheets are likely to be exposed to moisture e.g.

  • Sheets on the inside of external walls where no sarking is provided.
  • All sheets being used in bathrooms, laundries etc.
  • Ceiling sheets

How can I minimise waste?

If the wall contains doorways or windows that are more than 1210mm wide, you can sometimes save material by starting to sheet at one edge of the opening: i.e. you can avoid cutting a large hole out of a sheet.

To fill in heads above doorways and floor-length windows less than 1210mm wide, you can use off-cuts, rather than cut large holes out of a full sheet. This is done using an off-cut and joining this to the v-groove of the next full sheet.

NOTE: The window and door head sheets must be installed as you go, otherwise you may not end up with a gap that is a full number of boards wide. You will need to cut to the centre of the v-groove and router a groove to allow you to install the tongue in the new join.

When you have finished one wall, you can use the off-cut from the last sheet to start the next wall if the off-cut is large enough to be practical.

The Intrim VJ Board Pro tongue can be removed by pulling from one end of the tongue using pliers. The tongue is interchangeable and may be used on either side of the sheet.

Frequently Asked Questions

How thick is a VJ board?

VJ board sheets are usually 9 millimetres thick and Intrim’s VJ Board is 1214mm wide. They are available in standard lengths of 2420, 3020, and 3620 and the special length of 5400mm which is perfect for ceilings or tall walls.

Is your VJ Board fire rated?

Intrim VJ Board Pro is made using general purpose Moisture Resistant Medium-density fibreboard (MDF) which is not fire rated. However, Fire rated VJ board can be produced on demand in some cases, depending upon the quantity of the order and will have a longer than usual lead time. Talk to one of our sales representatives to discuss your requirement on 1800 622 081 or contact us 

Do I have to use plasterboard or can I install this directly to the studs?

VJ Board Pro is designed to be able to be used instead of plasterboard, and can be installed directly to the studs. You can however also install it over existing plasterboard if renovating, just consider removing your skirting boards first due to the thickness of the board.

Should I choose VJ boards or plasterboard?

Intrim VJ Board Pro sheets are more durable and versatile than traditional plasterboard and are also extremely cost-effective due to their relatively low installation costs. The plasterboard on the other hand is easily damaged and can be difficult to repair. VJ board panelling can be used as an alternative to plasterboard for wall linings or ceiling linings, or it can be applied directly over existing walls to create a beautiful interior design element, elevating the look of the room.

Can I use VJ Board Pro in bathrooms?

We don’t recommend using VJ Board in wet areas or areas exposed to a lot of moisture, such as bathrooms. MDF products don’t expand or contract like real wood does, meaning that it’s more susceptible to moisture damage if water is allowed to penetrate the surface (as is commonplace in a bathroom). All our VJ sheets are standard MRMDF. There are many other products appropriate for use in the bathroom such as Intrims range of Lining Boards, which when run vertically provide the VJ Board appearance. You can our primed FJ pine LB03 or LB06 Intrim Lining Boards.

Can I use VJ Board Pro on the ceiling?

Yes, VJ Board pro is an ideal product for both walls & ceilings. Coming in long 5.4m lengths it is a popular choice for ceilings. See it used here in Front Porch Properties Rachael Turner's Burleigh Beach Shack.

Is VJ panelling waterproof?

No, VJ Board Pro is made using a general purpose Moisture Resistant Medium-density fibreboard (MDF). MR MDF is not recommended for areas that are going to be exposed to a lot of moisture such as external applications or wet areas such as bathrooms. A High Moisture resistant MDF (UHMR MDF) would be required for those areas. There are other VJ Board Panelling systems on the market that claim to be waterproof such as for external areas exposed to the elements. These products use other substrate materials that are more suitable for wet areas, however, the finish isn’t as attractive as VJ Board Pro, and the cost is significantly higher. Get the VJ Board look for a wet area through Intrims range of lining boards such as LB03. These narrower panels clip together and create the same effect of Vertical Joint wall panelling. Select the Primed FJ Pine option for wet areas,  they provide a beautiful finish and can be easier for an installer in smaller ticky bathrooms compared to the larger VJ panel sheets.

What is VJ Panelling?

VJ panelling refers to a type of wall panelling commonly found in Australian homes. "VJ" stands for "vertical joint," which refers to the vertical lines created by the panelling. They are typically made from timber boards installed vertically on walls to create a decorative and textured look. It is a traditional form of wall cladding that adds character and visual interest to interior spaces. The panels are usually tongue-and-groove boards, where the tongue of one board fits into the groove of the adjacent board, creating a tight and seamless connection. Talk to our sales team to find out more about Intrim VJ wall panelling on 1800 622 081

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