Shredding Technology? The Basics of Paper Shredding Equipment

Shredding Technology? The Basics of Paper Shredding Equipment

Do you shred paper?  Do you shred on-site?  How do I know my material is being destroyed?  These are the questions we regularly see and hear at Tiger Shredding & Recycling.  Never are we asked, “what kind of equipment do you destroy my documents with?”  or “By which method do you shred paper?”  Ah, I’m glad you asked!  Let’s learn a little bit about:

Paper Shredding Equipment!

There are plenty of shredders out there and they generally fall into two categories:  slow or high-speed machines.  High speed shredders cut (or fractionate) faster due to higher RPMs of their rotors/shafts – however, this can lead to higher heat caused by more friction and the possibility of higher dust generation.  High speed shredders are typically the right machines when heavy or more difficult items need to be destroyed or particle sizes need to be small.  Slow-speed shredders rely on high torque shear cutting and are usually cooler and are quieter.  Whether you use a slow or fast shredder, you will to have the right system attachments to account for noise, dust, maintenance and potential fire creation – depending on what’s being shredded.

Mill Technology

For higher speed machines, mills – either hammermill or ring type, are a longtime industry staple of size reduction and are also used to destroy hard drives and other bulky materials.  Mills use high speeds to spin rings or hammers that beat the material until it is small enough to fall though a screen.   Hammermill shredding systems are very thorough – however, they can take longer to process the destruction of equipment – and, depending on the placement of the machine, high heat caused be friction can create fire hazards.

Single Rotor Shredders

Single-rotor shredders can shred whole products or are used to be secondary for use on pre-shredded materials.  They rely on the flywheel effect and use solid, heavy rotors to enable more efficient destruction.  Several blades affixed to the rotor shaft shear against stationary blades attached to the granulator frame.  A sizing screen allows the material to continue to recirculate until it’s small enough to pass through and meet security requirements.  Maintaining the proper manufacturer’s specification on shear gap – the distance between rotor blade and stationary blade interface – is a critical aspect to allowing proper and efficient cutting.

Similar to mills (above) single rotor shredders offer high quality liberation and throughput.  Because of this, they are challenged when facing steel and non-ferrous metals, and do well when processing batches of plastics, circuit boards and paper.

Shear Shredders

Slow-speed, high-torque, shear-type shredders are the most common kinds in document shredding industry.   The interlocking ‘shears’ are disk-like and have hooks integrated into their circumference.  They are offered in two, three, or four shaft models with either electric or hydraulic driven options.  The two shaft models are affordable, but are limited to produce mostly a long strip cut based on the width of the cutters.  Due to security concerns, care must be used when choosing the cutter thickness and screen size, since throughput can be reduced by excessive re-circulation.

In Conclusion

Due to ever-evolving shredding technology improvements, there have never been so many options in shredding equipment.  Choosing the right cutter or hammer materials and configuration, design, screen size, and drive system play integral roles in shredding performance – which in turn will keep the customer satisfied!

About Tiger Shredding in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tiger Shredding & Recycling offers document shredding services in Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Lafayette and Monroe, Louisiana.  We offer both on-site and off-site services as well as recycling programs around Southern Louisiana.

We also like to watch shredding videos.  Check out one of our favorites from SSI’s Watch it Shred!

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