OT: Wallboard Help?

Hi, all...
I'm repainting a bedroom, and after removing a couple layers of wallpaper, found that the first layer of wallpaper was put up without a coat of paint or primer. When I tried to remove it, it pulled up some of the backing paper. So now I've got some seriously crappy looking wallboard. I'm having problems getting spackling paste to stick, too.
Some questions:
1. The patch stuff I'm using is "spackling paste", but at the hardware store, they sell another product called "joint compound". What's the difference between these two products? Am I using the wrong one?
2. I laid down a coat of primer, hoping this would firm up the layer of paper enough that I could sand it. Was this a dumb idea or a good one?
3. Should I just rip out the old sheetrock and start over, or is there hope for a smooth wall with a reasonable amount of effort?
Thanks, guys!
-Tim
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snipped-for-privacy@sover.net says...

to go on a bit thicker. Either one _should_ stick to the wall OK, though. If they won't you may have to resort to re-skinning the wall by putting the thinnest rock you can find (1/4" may be available) over the existing, tape and mud.
--
Mark

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Sounds like a great place to hang a picture to cover the mess up.
Mark wrote:

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Use joint compound. Sheetrockers and wallpaper hangers also call it "mud". Float the banged up surface with a large, flat trowel, then sand it smooth when it has dried overnight.
Almost any wallpapering job requires joint compound touch-up for dings and dents. These things really show through a new coat. To remove the old wallpaper, just use a large natural sponge and lots of hot water. Keep mopping the wallpaper with the wet sponge, and eventually - - it takes awhile - - the glue will soften and then you can pull it off. Give it a mopping - - go have a beer - - go back and give it another mopping, then another beer. Eventually either the stuff will start pulling off easily or you won't give a damn.
For what it's worth, I've never known a building contractor to prime a wall in a new house before hanging wallpaper.

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It would defeat the purpose of putting up wall paper with a sticky backing.
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Young Carpenter

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2 years ago I removed the wall paper from my master bathroom and the paper on the sheetrock came off, in spots. Some spots the size of my fist. I used dry wall joint compound thinned down with water to the consistency of Mayonnaise and then applied with a texturing brush. I can hardly tell the good from the bad spots.

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