by surging growth in sales of document destruction
systems and steady demand for industrial recycling
machines, paper shredder manufacturers are seeing
some of their best years ever. “This year
we’ll grow another 20 percent and we grew
18 percent last year,” says Sean Richter,
senior technical salesman for Shred-Tech of Cambridge,
Ontario. “That’s by far our biggest
applications range from printers who need to shred
overruns and misprints to manufacturers and distributors
shredding corrugated boxes and paper rolls. Document
destruction includes the exceptionally fast-growing
field of mobile destruction systems mounted on trucks
as well as larger portable and stationary in-plant
document shredders must conform to the North American
standard of producing pieces no larger than 5/8
inch. Baler shredders often produce much larger
sizes. For instance, magazine stock that is too
slippery to bale with the sheets intact can be easily
baled if shredded into somewhat smaller strips.
fall into two major categories: hammer mills and
shredders that cut or pierce and tear the material
to be recycled. Stock is typically introduced to
the shredder by conveyor or gravity feed. Exit screens
regulate the size of particles when necessary. Most
machines are electric-powered, with horsepower ranging
from 75 to 250 h.p.
Systems in Grand Prairie, Texas, its Roto-Grind
shredders are the most popular for paper applications.
A half-dozen Roto-Grind models go from the M-50,
with a half-meter wide rotor, to the 3-meter-wide
M-300. The Roto-Grind models can shred a wide variety
of materials, but paper shredders mostly buy models
from the 110 to the 130 and up.
machine is the 160,” says Scott White, Granutech
director of sales for the West Coast and Mexico.
“We build what’s called our high speed
version 160 that will do in the 10,000 to 12,000
lbs. per hour range.” Granutech’s main
markets are for high-volume, in-plant document destruction.
machines typically employ hydraulic drive and the
high-speed models operate at up to 125 rpm. The
hydraulic drive is paired with a circuit that shifts
the machine into lower speed, higher torque mode
when it senses a high load. “Our focus is
on high torque,” says White. “We’re
typically considerably higher torque because our
core machine is hydraulic.” A Roto-Grind 160
baseline price is $150,000 to $200,000, with the
lower-priced machines using electric drives and
the higher prices machines employing hydraulic drive.
Vecoplan LLC of
High Point, North Carolina, sells its P Series shredders
for printer waste and document destruction applications.
Printing customers typically require throughputs
of from 1,500 lbs. to 30 tons per hour. For document
destruction customers call for 500 pound-per-hour
machines on up to 30,000 lbs. an hour, says Vecoplan’s
Chris Hawn, national sales manager.
employ a platen or ram similar to what a baler would
have on one side of the vertical feed hopper. On
the other side is the rotor with shredding knives
spinning at to 90 to 150 rpm. “We use that
ram to introduce materials to the rotor based on
amperage,” says Hawn. “The ream can
back off or go forward. It’s a smart machine
that knows how to load itself. When you fill this
hopper up with two or three cubic yards, or five
or 10 cubic yards in a big machine, it takes over.
It’s true dump and run.”
range from $31,000 to $600,000. More than a dozen
models include the RG24P, with a 24 inch by 14 inch
hopper opening, volume of half a cubic yard and
20 h.p. motor. At the other end is the RG98P “Ultra”
with a 98 inch by 120 inch opening into a hopper
holding 12 to 15 cubic yards and a 225 to 250 h.p.
motor. The company also manufactures mobile document
destruction systems. Hawn says Vecoplan has gone
from zero sales in paper shredding four years ago
to $15 million a year today.
shredding systems employ knives mounted on twin
shafts rotating at 45 rpm. Slower rotating shafts
reduce dust, Richter says. The company has more
than 1,000 mobile document destruction systems deployed
in North America. Shredded documents typically go
directly to a baler and pulper for recycling. “It’s
all being recycled,” Richter says.
models with 100-horsepower motors capable of shredding
up to 6 tons per hour are priced at approximately
$120,000. ST-100 in 100 h.p. configurations offering
throughput up to 10 tons per hour go for around
are typically for industrial applications, while
the others are suited for document destruction,
Richter says. “The ST-75 and smaller give
you confidential shred size,” he explains.
“The big machines are either for incinerator
feed machines or for a pulper, where the shred size
can be two inches by six inches long.”
of Pompano Beach, Florida, sells a special-purpose
shredding system designed for recycling corrugated
cardboard boxes into packing fill. CEO Norman Levine
says the machines come in two price ranges, a medium-
or heavy-duty C-16-2 Corru-Shredder for $23,200
and a light-duty Corru-Shredder C-16D-2 for $19,200.
larger machine is stationary and comes with a front-loading
conveyor and a 2 h.p. electric motor, while the
smaller machine is portable has a 1 h.p. motor.
Both systems also include a CSL-2 or C-SLD-2 Corru-Slitter
which takes corrugated boxes, removes staples and
cuts them into blanks of preset size. The blanks
are fed into the Corru-Shredder and scissor-cut
to turn them into 1/8 inch by 1/8 inch by 4 inch
pieces of corrugated fill.
fill can be used to replace packing materials such
as plastic foam peanuts, says Levine. “They
save money by not having to throw out the corrugated
paper any more, and they save money by not having
to buy packing,” he says. Corru-Shred will
also buy excess Corru-Fill from its customers and
resell it to other firms who need packing material.
“The machine then becomes not only a cost
saver but a profit center,” he says. Corru-Shred’s
biggest customer is UPS, Levine says.
Propelled by growing
concern about information control, paper shredding
is expected to continue to be a growth business.
The only issues on the horizon are anti-idling environmental
laws being considered in some states that might
affect mobile document destruction trucks.