Cement fiber siding question

I am going to be installing cement fiber siding on an addition I am building onto a future rental property that I own. My question is:: Is there much/any difference between brands? Around here, everyone refers to all cement fiber siding as "Hardie", just as they call all tissues "Kleenex", and soft drinks "Coke". Yesterday I happened to notice some at a building supply store that gets a lot of closeout, one of a kind, slightly damaged etc stuff. I do not remember the brand name, but it was 7 1/4" by 12' pieces for $2.99 each. The same thing in Hardie is about $5.-$5.50 each. The stuff looked OK. It was possibly very slightly thinner than Hardie, but not that much. Really, is there much that can happpen to that type of siding-- crumbling/deteriorating over time, cracking etc? Obviously, I do not want to buy junk, but if it is close to as good as good as the major brand for just slightly over half the price, I would be interested. I am going to call the store today, or stop by there and get the name of the stuff so I can check into it further, but I would appreciate any advice I can get from anyone with more experience in this product than I have, (Shouldn't be too hard to find, as I have none). Thanks, and a very Merry Christmas to every one!! Larry
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On 12/24/2004 8:49 AM US(ET), lp13-30 took fingers to keys, and typed the following:

I don't know anything about cement siding, but if this stuff is slightly damaged, and also a closeout item. How much extra would you have to buy in order to get enough good pieces to finish the job? Also what happens in the future if some get damaged and you have to replace pieces that are no longer available?
--
Bill

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Bill, thanks for the reply. This siding is not damaged. I do not know exactly how this store ended up with it-- whether itis some kind of dicontinued or closeout or what. I figured on buying some extra for any repairs in the future that may be needed-- which is not a bad idea regardless of brand or product, as even the largest manufacturers change product lines from time to time. Thanks again, and Merry Christmas to all. Larry
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