Hardiboard -- how hardy?

We purchased this home about two years ago. It has a brick front and the rest is hardiboard. I've thought about affixing a couple of garden hose reels to the walls in the back and side yards. However, I'm concerned that I might damage the hardiboard. Is this stuff brittle so that I might risk cracking it just by driving a couple of nails (or screws) into it? Any insight is appreciated. Thanks!
Smag
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Hardiboard is pretty flexible, so you can put fasteners through it with no problem. The special tool sold to cut the stuff is really just powered scissors.
With almost any product, you can avoid cracking by predrilling.

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Steve wrote:

i have never used hardibacker board but i just bought some for a tile countertop job i will soon be doing. is this stuff really hard to cut? can i score it with a utility knike and then break it off? what about a circular saw? jigsaw perhaps? thanks cj
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Steve said that they sell a special cutter. Or, you might try contacting the company explaining that you only have a small job which doesn't justify the expense of a special cutter. Ask what they would suggest.
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Hardibacker is different than Hardiboard. Hardibacker is a hard underlayment for tile. Hardiboard is a textured siding product.
I've never used Hardibacker, but I'd cut it by scoring it with a knife and snapping it, like wallboard. You can use the techniques mentioned in the other messages for holes and inside corners.
Hardiboard gives you several options: * The special tool snips out a small strip. Cleanup is easy. * Use a masonry blade. This is overkill. * I've seen circular saw blades at the store that are specifically labeled for Hardiboard. This is overkill with a price premium. * You can try scoring and snapping, but I don't know how well that will work. You'll go through a lot of knife blades.
This is what I do: * Turn an old blade around backwards in your hand-held circular saw. This is a cheap solution. Don't use a blade with lots of teeth.
Anything using a saw will create a LOT of dust. Wear a mask, and be nice to the neighbors.
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Steve wrote:

I just cut a bunch of hardibacker the year before last for a granite tile countertop. There is a scoring knife specially designed for cutting hardibacker. It has carbide tips and will last longer than utility blades. http://www.pureadhesion.co.uk/product/172/hardibacker-250 -(6mm-floors) (at the bottom of the page) I did use a table saw to cut most long pieces. Wear safety glasses and a face mask and saw it outdoors.

--
Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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I use an old carbide blade on my table saw. Cuts very clean but very dusty. Also there is a tool with a carbide tip on it - score and break. Not as clean as with the table saw. I also have a 10" wet saw with a diamond blade and that should give the cleanest cut. Circular saw should be ok is you have diamond or carbide blades.
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I've used a utility knife to score then break hardibacker. It's not perfect though. I now use a straightedge and a carbide blade in my Makita cordless 3-3/8" circular saw - OUTDOORS[*]. For circles (dryer exhaust, toilets, etc.) I use a RotoZip and circle cutter with a carbide bit. I'd probably use the RotoZip and a template for a sink cutout, were I doing a counter top.
[*] The dust is supposed to be _very_ bad for the lungs.
--
Keith

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cj wrote:

Its CONCRETE, CEMENTOUS material. You need specialized saw blades and drill bits to properly cut and drill it. Standard steel tools will wear out almost INSTANTLY.
HardiBoard, HardiPanel, and HardiBacker are all cement-filled materials
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Smagmire:
This is that 'exterior sheetrock' (my term) stuff, right? If so I would treat it just like sheetrock in terms of holes, drill a hole and put a plastic anchor in before inserting a screw. You don't even need to find a stud, as I would hope that there is sheathing under it?
Would not be my number one choice for exterior siding but my wife always gives me the, 'champagne tastes on a beer barrel budget', line so what the hey! I'm sure it must be cost friendly.
Are you located in the US or overseas? I haven't seen a lot of this stuff on newer housing, but then I guess I don't get out enough?
Just my $.02.
Jay
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Um, no, unless you think of sheetrock being made of cement and wood fiber. And unless you think of sheetrock being structural, fireproof, and insect-proof. Perhaps you are thinking of Hardibacker, an underlayment for tile?

There is no need for structural sheathing under it since it is structural. But it's way too thin for a plastic anchor. Best bet is to drill it and screw into a stud, especially for something as heavy as a hose reel holding a lot of hose with water in it.

More expensive than wood or vinyl. You might want to look here:
www.jameshardie.com
--
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