Product Type: Pierre Farber gadgets
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Ready, Shreddy, GO!!!
Mini Paper Shredder
Member Name: skittle
Mini Paper Shredder
Date: 08/03/04, updated on 08/03/04 (1733 review reads)
Advantages: Cheap, sturdy, efficient
Disadvantages: Fragile bucket, requires emptying often
After reading aefra?s excellent opinion on this product earlier this year I made my mind up that if I ever happened across one of these little gadgets on one of my occasional shopping sorties, I?d snap it up quick-smart. Well, it just so happens that whilst wandering around one of the many £1 shops that proliferate my local town centre one day not long afterwards, I came across not just one, but a huge pile of ?Stationery Zone? mini paper shredders ? I had to have one!
The bucket of the paper shredder is made of clear plastic, but the top, which includes the shredding mechanism, is made of coloured plastic, and is available in three different colours ? black, pink and blue. The model shown on the outside of the box is the blue one, and I was very taken with it, so chose a blue one for myself. I have to admit that I wasn?t keen on the pink at all, I?m not a pink kind of person. The black one was fine, and would be perfect for a more professional environment than my home, but to be honest it is just a little bit dull, and the blue one appealed to me much more! Now, if you?re not a wee bit sad, like I am, you?ll probably be thinking right now that any paper shredder is going to be dull, whatever the colour, but you see I?m somewhat obsessed by stationary. It?s a real failing of mine, you should just see the bucket full of pens on my desk (and I?m not exaggerating here) along with the huge stack of different coloured and patterned writing pads, I?m a very, very sad case!
Still, after choosing my blue topped shredder I paid a measly £5 to take it away, and rushed home to try it out. The box containing the shredder is small enough to fit inside a carrier bag, and it?s not prohibitively heavy, you certainly wouldn?t need a car to get one of these home. Having said that, it is securely packed. The cardboard box it comes in is strong and sturdy and
it is also enclosed in a plastic bag inside the box to keep it clean and dry.
At home I couldn?t wait to delve in and play with my shredder (oo-er!) Assembly was exceptionally easy, simply a case of removing a safety cap from the end of a metal bar which protrudes from the side of the lid and replacing it with the handle, which is exactly the same blue as the top itself.
Once assembled, I immediately had to try the shredder out on the nearest thing to hand, which happened to be the receipt for the shredder itself. I fed the paper into the slot at the top of the shredder, turned the handle, and within a second or two the receipt was transformed into a neat little pile of paper shreddings in the plastic bucket of the shredder. .. More! Moooore! NEED TO SHRED MORE!!! At this point I got a little carried away, and attempted to shred many more pieces of paper, including a window envelope, which the shredder dealt with very capably, the clear plastic window caused it no problems at all.
With my shredding mania satiated for a while I deposited the shredder in the study, fully intending to shred the entire outdated contents of my filing cabinet later that day? That was about a month ago, and I haven?t touched it since! However, this morning I got to the point where I really couldn?t put off the filing any longer. A huge mountain of bank statements, electricity bills and the like was threatening to explode out of the in-tray (I know, I know, it really is exceptionally sad that I?ve got an in-tray at home, but I did TELL you I was addicted to stationary!) but the filing cabinet was bursting at the seams, something needed to be done, and fast! Enter the mini shredder?
Taking a quick glance at the cardboard box before I shoved it into the bin, I noticed that
it proudly proclaims ?does not require batteries or power lead?. Well, personally I?d thought that the handle was a bit of a giveaway to that fact, but still, there was some more relevant information on the side of the box, which follows:
Paper inlet 229mm (which, incidentally, is the perfect size for a piece of A4 paper)
Not suitable for card
Remove all paper clips and staples
Keep fingers, loose clothing, hair, ties etc clear of shredding slot when in use.
Now, to be honest, none of that is exactly rocket science, though I suppose the manufacturer has to ensure that they?re covered against idiotic behaviour by including these instructions. Honestly, though, unlike an electric shredder which would possibly carry on shredding a tie, hair or even fingers, I think I?d probably notice if I was shredding my own hand and stop turning the handle? Just a thought!
Along with the warnings on the exterior of the box is a white outlined square with ?2 sheets? written inside it, which I?m assuming means that the shredder can handle 2 sheets of paper at a time. I?ve tried this, and it will capably shred both pages at once, but it is much harder to turn the handle than with a single sheet of paper, so personally I just tend to shred the one sheet of paper at a time, it might take longer but it is definitely easier on the hands.
The next statement on the box is one that I can?t say that I agree with at all. ?Ideal for home and office use? is, I believe, stretching things a little. Whilst this shredder is perfect for occasional home use, I wouldn?t want to have to shred an office load of paper with it, as not only would this be extremely time consuming, but pretty hard on the old hands too. Although the shredder is remarkably well-made and sturdy for the price, I can?t see it holding up to prolonged, heavy use either. <
The top part of the machine, the shredder itself, is very sturdy, but the plastic bucket for catching the paper feels quite brittle and fragile. If it was dropped on a hard surface I could see it breaking very easily. It is also quite small, and although I experimented to see just how many sheets of A4 paper I could jam into it before the shredder stopped working (18 sheets) you can really only comfortably fit up to 12 sheets in the plastic bucket before you have to empty it, so it does need to be emptied frequently. The shreddings tend to leap out of the bucket when you take the top off, so I?d recommend doing this over the bin. I also found that the last sheet of paper to be shredded would still be protruding from the shredder, and would need to be pulled out by hand, which was a little irritating. Also, because the lid of the shredder is see through plastic, I can see a couple of little shreds of paper which have escaped from the bucket and somehow managed to get themselves jammed behind the shredding mechanism in the lid of the shredder. Whilst there are two rows of screws holding the top together, so it should be possible to take it apart and remove the trapped paper, it does appear that the manufacturer doesn?t want the customer messing about with the sharp bits, as the screws are set about at inch into the lid, and would probably be quite difficult to get at.
Another problem I?ve encountered with this machine is that the rubber pads on the bottom of the plastic bucket really aren?t substantial enough to keep the shredder from slipping about on the desk when you use the machine. I found myself having to hold the shredder down, quite firmly, with my left hand, whilst operating the handle with my right, which made it rather difficult to feed the paper into the slot for shredding. Still, this problem improved dramatically once I placed the shredder onto my mouse mat, and con
All in all, for what I paid for this machine, and for the use I?m going to get out of it, I?m extremely happy with my purchase. I?d recommend this paper shredder for home use (or very light office use) to anybody who would like a shredder but is put off by the larger, more expensive electric or battery powered shredders.
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