Operating Considerations

You must also have an understanding of the volume and frequency, along with the nature of the material to be shredded. Only then can you confidently decide between a strip-cut or cross-cut shredder.

The 1/4" strip-cut shredder remains the most popular type of shredder sold for several reasons. First, the relatively low tooling and manufacturing costs translate into a very attractive purchase price to the end user. Also, the limited amount of cutting being done (in comparison to a cross-cut shredder) results in a greater cutting capacity (sheets per pass). However, the commercial cross-cut is rapidly becoming the shredder of preference for business use, in spite of its higher price tag.

Two hidden benefits inherent to all cross-cut shredders are:

  • A considerable reduction in the volume of shredded waste, hence a savings in bags and waste removal.
  • A substantial reduction of the operator time spent handling the shredded waste.
  • No more compacting and compressing to fit more into the bag.
  • Far fewer bag changes.

The double cutting action of a cross-cut produces a rectangular shred particle which drops freely into the waste bag and lies flat. During operation these shreds collect like falling snow. Strip-cutshreds, on the other hand, behave differently. The very same buoyant and fluffy characteristic which makes strip-cut shreds excellent for packing material will create additional work for theshredder operator.

The flat, self compressing nature of the cross-cut particle results in a bag capacity of 2 to 5 times as much. Furthermore, the cross-cut particle completely fills the waste bag without the operator ever to having to stop and compress the waste. This minimal operator handling results in a cleaner operating environment in addition to the enhanced productivity.

Comparative studies reveal that a cross-cut shredder can outperform a comparable strip-cut shredder having a greater cutting capacity. Although a greater amount of actual "shredding time' is required, the cross-cut's advantage results from far fewer bag changes and the elimination of frequent waste handling.

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