Hardfile geometry can be a bit of a nightmare, as you've found.
Firstly, is your HDF a simple partition image, or a complete drive image? (I.e. is it selected in the firmware as "Hardfile (disk img)" or "Hardfile (filesys)")?
If the former, then you might have more luck leaving the geometry parameters in UAE as 0 and letting it figure them out for itself. (I don't think you can do this via the UI, though - it involves editing the .uaerc file by hand.)
If the latter, and all else fails, then one option is to use the Linux FFS filesystem driver, like so:
sudo modprobe affs
sudo losetup /dev/loop0 /path/to/file.hdf
sudo mount -taffs /dev/loop0 /mnt/
The other option is to set the IDE slave in the OSD to MMC/SD card, then try and mount the SD card itself using fat95. Again, it's hit and miss - I still have some firmware hacking to do to make it work on all cards, but it does work with some.
Non-bootable ADF with Fat95 and a premade sd0: (master) and sd1: (slave) icon here: http://npandd.co.uk/Amiga/Fat95.zip