Cardboard recycling

Cardboard Shredder and Perforators

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By Recycling.com/ 24 June 2020 Shares

Turn Cardboard Boxes into Eco-Friendly Packaging Material

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Do you want to make eco-friendly packaging material from your cardboard waste? Then a cardboard shredder or perforator is a great solution to repurpose and recycle cardboard into sustainable packaging and void-fill material. In addition to being environmentally friendly, it can also save your company a lot of money on packaging material costs.

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Best Cardboard Perforators & Shredders


HSM ProfiPack

HSM ProfiPack C400
App. price: $2,000

HSM-ProfiPack-C400-cardboard-perforator

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16.3″
  • Size: 14.7″H x 24″W x 15.5″D
  • Power: 110-120 V
  • Noise: 62 dB

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HSM ProfiPack P425
App. price: $4,500

HSM-ProfiPack-P425-cardboard-perforator

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16.3″
  • Size: 40.9″H x 30.3″W x 22.4″D
  • Power: 110-120 V
  • Noise: 59 dB

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Hyper Shredder

Hyper Shredder 299
App. price: $2,500

hyper-shredder-299-net-cardboard-shredder-perforator

  • Type: Perforator or Shredder
  • Intake width: 11.8″
  • Size: 21.6″H x 22.8″W x 11″D
  • Power: 220-240 V
  • Noise: 45 dB

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Hyper Shredder 300
App. price: $4,500

  • Type: Perforator / Shredder
  • Intake width: 11.8″
  • Size: 41.3″H x 19.7″W x 33.4″D
  • Power: 220-240 / 380-400 V
  • Noise: 55 dB

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Hyper Shredder 400
App. price: $5,000

hyper-shredder-400-net-cardboard-shredder-perforator

  • Type: Perforator / Shredder
  • Intake width: 15.7″
  • Size: 41.3″H x 19.7″W x 35.4″D
  • Power: 220-240 / 380-400 V
  • Noise: 55 dB

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Hyper Shredder 500
App. price: $7,000

hyper-shredder-500-net-cardboard-shredder-perforator

  • Type: Perforator / Shredder
  • Intake width: 19.7″
  • Size: 45.6″H x 32.7″W x 51.2″D
  • Power: 220-240 / 380-400 V
  • Noise: 55 dB

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Hyper Shredder 700
App. price: $13,350

hyper-shredder-700-cardboard-shredder-perforator

  • Type: Perforator / Shredder
  • Intake width: 27.5″
  • Size: 45.6″H x 32.7″W x 51.2″D
  • Power: 380-400 V
  • Noise: 55 dB

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Cushion Pack / Optimax

Cushion Pack CP 333 NTi
App. price: $1,700

Cushion-Pack-CP-333-NTi

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 12.6″
  • Size: 18.1″H x 22.8″W x 24.4″D
  • Power: 230 V
  • Noise: 65 dB

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Cushion Pack CP 316 S2i
App. price: $2,500

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 12.6″
  • Size: 38.6″H x 26″W x 26″D
  • Power: 115 V
  • Noise: 68 dB

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Cushion Pack CP 422 S2i
App. price: $5,000

AABES-Cushion-Pack-CP422-Series2

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16.5″
  • Size: 38.6″H x 26″W x 26″D
  • Power: 230 V
  • Noise: 68 dB

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Cushion Pack CP 428 S2i
App. price: $6,700

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16.5″
  • Size: 43.3″H x 29.5″W x 31.5″D
  • Power: 400 V
  • Noise: 71 dB

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Cushion Pack CP 430 S2i
App. price: $9,000

ABES-Cushion-Pack-CP430-Series2-Cardboard-Shredder

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16.5″
  • Size: 43.3″H x 29.5″W x 31.5″D
  • Power: 400 V
  • Noise: 78 dB

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Cushion Pack CP 424 CMi
App. price: $7,200

  • Type: Shredder
  • Intake width: 16.5″
  • Size: 55.1″H x 29.5″W x 31.5″D
  • Power: 230 V
  • Noise: 75 dB

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Intimus PacMaster

Intimus PacMaster S
App. price: $4,500

Intimus-PacMaster-S-Cardboard-Converter

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16.7″
  • Size: 37.4″H x 27.17″W x 18.5″D
  • Power: 220 V
  • Noise: 68 dB

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Formax Greenwave

Formax Greenwave 410
App. price: $2,250

Greenwave-410-Cardboard-Perforator

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16″
  • Size: 14.2″H x 23.2″W x 16.6″D
  • Power: 115 V
  • Noise: n/a

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Formax Greenwave 430
App. price: $4,500

  • Type: Perforator
  • Intake width: 16.9″
  • Size: 38.1″H x 24.8″W x 22.4″D
  • Power: 115 V
  • Noise: n/a

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Advice about cardboard shredders

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reuse-reduce-recycle-iconConverted cardboard is an ideal packaging material to safely ship heavy and fragile goods.Recycling.com


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Convert waste into zero waste

What to look for when buying a shredder for cardboard?

A cardboard shredding machine works a bit like a paper shredder for your discarded cardboard boxes. The machine upgrades regular cardboard into high quality and eco-friendly packaging material or void fill material, such as strips, netting or chips. This sustainable material is an economical and ecological alternative to plastic packaging material such as foam peanuts, bubble wrap and styrofoam blocks.

Save on packaging materials and reduce the costs on cardboard waste collections.

Do you want to know more about cardboard perforators or shredders? Then feel free to take a look at our cardboard perforator and shredder guide.


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Cardboard Shredder and Perforator Guide

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What is a cardboard shredder?

A cardboard shredder is a commercial or industrial machine that lets you instantly recycle and repurpose your cardboard waste into packaging material. These cardboard recycling machines can produce cushioning netting, flat netting, chips or strips. A cardboard perforator converts cardboard into the flexible, cushioning and shock absorbing cardboard netting, and a cardboard shredder turns cardboard into small shreds or strips.

The netting can be used as a durable packaging material to roll your products into that you want to ship. It can also be used to fill up voids inside a box. The cardboard chips or strips can also be used as a void fill, these small shreddings can easily fill up event the tiniest voids to protect your product in its package.

Void fill is the cushioning material that fills the void around the product and its package. The material fills the space to protect the product during transit.

Is a cardboard shredder the same as a paper shredder?

A cardboard shredder, perforator or converter isn’t meant to shred paper or confidential documents, so don’t confuse this machine with a paper shredder because these are different devices. While the purpose and the capacity of a regular paper shredder is to destroy confidential paper documents by cutting them into unreadable particles or confetti to protect people’s privacy, the purpose of a cardboard shredder is to make your own packing and void fill material. This means you can’t shred cardboard with a standard paper shredder device.

hyper-shredder-300-industrial-cardboard-shredder-for-eco-friendly-packaging

Some cardboard boxes can contain a sticker with confidential information, such as a name or address. A cardboard converter can be used, in this case, to destroy this personal information.

The best way to reuse and shred cardboard is to use a cardboard shredder or perforator.

cardboard-perforator-packaging-material
Reuse your cardboard waste.

Use cardboard chips instead of plastic peanuts.

Although a cardboard shredder is not a paper shredder it does operate a bit like one. The machine’s gearbox, motor, and cutting block work together to cut the cardboard material in tiny chips, long strips or perforated sheets, depending on the type of shredder being used. The purpose of the machine is to reuse the processed cardboard as a free packaging material. This is not only cheaper, but also more environmentally friendly than using plastic. So, if your business uses a lot of packaging material for shipping products a­­­nd you have lots of cardboard waste, then a cardboard shredder is an ideal solution to reduce costs on this material, as well as on waste collection of your scrap cardboard.

cardboard-shredder-packaging-material
Change cardboard waste into eco-friendly packaging material.

You can insert almost any piece of cardboard into the opening of the shredder and the machine perforates the material in cushioning netting or it can shred the cardboard in square-shaped chips among other forms. These chips then fall into a plastic bag or another container which you can then be used as void filling material to protect products and goods in cardboard boxes that needs to be shipped. Any excess cardboard is trimmed off and can be shredded again. Keep in mind that these machines also have limits and can be overloaded which may lead to jamming. Most of the perforators or shredders can run continuously for multiple hours.

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Cardboard shredder or cardboard perforator

When you want to convert cardboard into packaging material through a machine you have to choose between a cardboard shredder and a cardboard perforator. But, what is the difference?

Both machines repurpose cardboard sheets or boxes into high-quality packaging material. Deciding which machine you want to buy depends on what kind of ecofriendly packaging filler you want to use. Do you want perforated cardboard, that is a shock-absorbing and flexible netting? Or do you want shredded cardboard void fill, which exists of strips or chips?

The question is, do you need void fill material or netting as a flexible, cushioning shock absorber?

While there are cardboard shredders that can also perforate, more often than not a cardboard machine can either shred or perforate. So, you need to figure out which type suits your needs.

Cardboard shredders thumb-cardboard-chips

A cardboard shredder cuts or shreds your cardboard waste into (long) strips or (small) chips. Both the strips and the chips are great to use as void fill and can easily replace plastic packing peanuts.

  • Shreds cardboard into strips, confetti or chips.
  • Use it as void fill material for packing and protecting products in boxes.
  • It avoids the reuse of cardboard boxes with confidential on them, such as addresses.

One example of a better-known manufacturer is Hyper Shredder who specifically produces cardboard shredders that produce strips or chips to use as void fill material. This company makes different types of cardboard shredders such as cardboard chips shredders and strip shredders.

cardboard-shredder-example-cp424cmi
Packer CP424CMI cardboard shredder

Cardboard perforators thumb-cardboard-netting

A cardboard perforator turns your cardboard scraps into a kind of matting or netting. This machine doesn’t shred but instead perforates the carton to give it a more cushioning characteristic. This netting can be used at the bottom of a box as a shock absorber, or to roll a product in to protect it. The perforated cardboard replaces bubble wraps and packaging air bags.

  • Perforates cardboard into elastic matting, mesh netting.
  • Use it as a shock absorber for packing and protecting products in boxes.
  • Very flexible and cushioning material.
cardboard-perforator-example-hsm-profipack
HSM ProfiPack C400

Recycle and reuse cardboard scrap as free and eco-friendly packaging material.

Different sizes and models

Both cardboard shredders and perforators come in different sizes and models. You can get a small, compact and portable tabletop shredder for small business or domestic use. You can get a perforator with castors (small wheels) for easy mobility. But there are also large industrial cardboard shredders and perforators for heavy-duty use and processing high volumes of cardboard waste. These industrial machines can process multiple layers of cardboard and have long-lasting steel blades and special gears for heavy-duty cycles.

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How does a cardboard shredder work and how do you operate one?

So how does a cardboard shredder work and is it difficult to operate? Both cardboard shredders and perforators are user-friendly and very easy to operate, not to mention also safe to use. Here is how easy it is to operate:

  1. Turn the machine on by switching the on/off switch.
  2. Grab a piece of cardboard and feed it into the front opening of the shredder or perforator.
  3. That’s it! The converted cardboard falls out of the back of the machine.

How does a cardboard perforator work?

The perforating machine uses a heavy-duty cutting cylinder, so the cardboard isn’t actually shredded but is instead only perforated by the blades. The result after perforating is a honeycomb-like structure in the cardboard. The structure gives the cardboard flexible, stretchable and cushioning properties. The processed cardboard is now also able to absorb shocks, which makes it perfect for protecting goods during transport and shipment. The cardboard netting is also ideal to fill in ‘the void’ between the cardboard box and your product. You can perforate a sheet of cardboard in one go and just like with the cardboard shredder any excess cardboard is trimmed off automatically, for example when a piece of carton is wider than the opening.

This video from HSM shows how you use a cardboard perforator and what you can do with the cushioning material. The model that is used in the video is the HSM ProfiPack C400 cardboard perforator, a compact but powerful cardboard converter that is ideal for smaller shipment departments.

Do you need to remove staples?

removing-staples-from-cardboard-box
Remove staples from cardboard prior to shredding.

It is strongly recommended to remove all staples and other hard metal objects from the cardboard to prevent wear or damage to the cutting heads. Shredding or perforating stapled cardboard occasionally will likely not cause any problems, but constant processing cardboard with metal items, such as staples, is likely to damage the cutting cylinders.

Another reason why it is better to remove staples and other sharp metals is that you will use the shredded cardboard as packaging material for products that might be fragile, where the metals could scratch what you are shipping.

Buy a heavy-duty staple remover here at Amazon.

What can you shred or perforate?

Cardboard shredders can shred any kind of (corrugated) cardboard. The only requirement is that the cardboard is flat, such as flattened cardboard boxes, sheets, and paperboard. Therefore, thick cardboard rolls can’t be processed by these machines because they are too thick. It should also be noted that craft paper also can’t be shredded or perforated because it is too thin.

You can shred or perforate:

  • Cardboard boxes (brown and colored cardboard)
  • Cardboard sheets and plates
  • Corrugated cardboard (single and double wall cardboard)
  • Paperboard, chipboard or fiberboard (gray cardboard)
corrugated-cardboard-and-grey-paperboard
Corrugated cardboard and grey paperboard.

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Why use a cardboard shredder?

While most cardboard converters produce cardboard matting from your cardboard scrap, for instance from cardboard boxes, some cardboard box shredders can also produce chips and strips instead of netting. This way you can use your cardboard shredding machine to quickly make your own void fill material in different shapes and sizes to protect products in transit, while at the same time repurposing and reusing your cardboard waste in an environmentally friendly manner.

Did you know that 77% of all cardboard is recycled.

cardboard-chips-of-corrugated-cardboard-plates
Shred cardboard into chips to use as a void fill.

Why reuse cardboard as packaging material?

By reusing cardboard as packaging material, you can extend the additional value of cardboard. How so:

  • Sustainable packing material – Cardboard is a more environmentally friendly and sustainable material than plastic. So, you are really protecting the environment when you use cardboard as void fill material instead of plastic packaging material such as bubble wrap, EPS packing peanuts, Styrofoam blocks/sheets or foam wrap.
  • Reduce packaging costs – Besides being sustainable it is also economically more attractive to recycle your cardboard waste into free packaging material, since you need to buy less or no packaging material from elsewhere. So you will be saving money on cardboard disposal costs, as there will be less cardboard to collect by your local waste hauler. Want to read more about reducing shipping filler costs?
  • High-quality material – Cardboard is a fantastic shock absorber and is very flexible. Therefore, it is a great material for protecting heavy or fragile products, especially ones that you want to ship or transport safely.

Did you know that paper fibers can be recycled around 7 times before it loses it’s robust qualities?

cardboard-packaging-vs-plastic-packaging-material

Costs of package filling materials

  • Perforated cardboard – FREE (excl. costs of cardboard perforator machine)
  • Air pillows – approx. 27cents per cubic foot
  • Styrofoam peanuts – approx. 22cents per cubic foot

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Pros and cons of cardboard shredders/perforators

Pros of a cardboard shredder/perforator:

  • Very easy to operate.
  • Re-purpose your own cardboard waste.
  • Reduce costs on packaging and shipping material.
  • Reduce costs of cardboard waste hauling.
  • Save money and save the environment.
  • Powerful motors for continuous shredding.
  • Cardboard is a fantastic packaging material.
  • The machine pays for itself because of free packaging material.
  • Feed cardboard without cool downtime, it can run continuously.

Cons of a cardboard shredder/perforator:

  • The machines create dust while shredding.
  • Most cardboard shredders can only produce netting.
  • The cardboard shredding machines are heavy.
  • Expensive machines.

Cardboard perforators reduce the need for costly packing materials. Reuse and recycle your own cardboard instead of buying new packing materials.

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Recommended for dispatching and warehouses

Who will benefit the most from a cardboard shredder? These shredding machines are especially useful for industrial businesses or departments in the logistics sector with large stocks of cardboard waste. Such as manufacturing facilities, recycling plants, warehouses, shipping departments, distribution centers. However, a carton shredder can also be used for offices that receive and send a lot of packages, such as e-commerce shops with their own shipping departments, where a lot of cardboard typically gets discarded. Therefore, we recommend these machines to anyone who has lots of scrap cardboard and can use the shredded or perforated material as packaging or void fill.

packaging-material-peanuts-cardboard-chips
Plastic peanuts or cardboard chips?

We recommend these machines when you have lots of scrap cardboard and can use the shredded or perforated material as packaging or void fill.

Can you use a cardboard shredder at home?

Typically, a corrugated shredder or perforator is used in industrial or commercial environments, however, if you would like one for home use a smaller compact cardboard shredder model would be appropriate, such as a tabletop cardboard shredder.

shredded-cardboard-composting-animal-bedding-worm-farming

Although somewhat unconventional for home users the produced cardboard shreds may also be useful for composting, worm farming or bedding for pet cages or even horse stables. However, keep in mind that these shreds and perforated sheets are quite large (approx. 1 x 1 in.) and also come in different shapes (elastic mash, strips, confetti).

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How much does a cardboard shredder or perforator cost?

A cardboard shredder is not a small investment. Prices start at around $2,000 and can go up to $10,000. The price mainly depends on the size and capacity of the cardboard perforator or shredder. They are a pretty significant investment, but they will allow you to reduce costs from buying packaging material and paying for cardboard waste collection. Therefore, you will find that the machine basically pays for itself in the long run.

front-and-rear-cardboard-shredder
Front and rear of the HSM ProfiPack C400.

However, if it is still too much of an investment for you, you may still want to consider the option of purchasing a second-hand shredder/perforator or leasing one for a fixed monthly rate from one of the manufacturers.

If you are considering buying or leasing a shredder or perforator but aren’t sure about maintenance and the possibility of repairs, then you may want to inform yourself about a maintenance contract that some manufacturers and resellers offer. These maintenance contracts allow you to be worry-free when it comes to maintaining or repairing these machines, as a manufacture approved technician will visit the sight to take care of everything for you. Nevertheless, if you are still curious about the maintenance of these machines here is a video you may find interesting. However, be careful these machines can be dangerous and any action is at their own risk, therefore it is advised to leave these activities to a professional.

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Buying a cardboard shredder/perforator checklist

hsm-cardboard-shredder-measuring
Easily measure the width of the cardboard.

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Tools, supplies and accessories

To make the use of your cardboard shredder or perforator more comfortable and convenient there are a few tools and accessories that you can opt for.

  • Both cardboard shredders and perforators have the option of an attached vacuum kit, which will collect any dust that it produces. While some manufacturers sell a complete kit which includes the vacuum, others only ship an attachment which you will still need to connect to your own industrial-grade vacuum cleaner or dust extraction system.
  • For a clean and organized production of shreds or perforated sheets, a container to catch the new product is very useful. A container may be a simple plastic bag or larger cardboard box but could also something more convenient and appropriate for heavy production like a box made of plastic, wood, or framed cloth with wheels or integrated pallet bottom.
  • A simple table in front of your machine can also simplify the use of it. Having a tabletop within close proximity can be a great help for you in preparing the cardboard (flattening it and removing metals) and feeding it to the machine.

container-for-shredded-or-perforated-cardboard

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Manufacturers and suppliers of cardboard shredding machines

cardboard-box-shredder-for-packaging-material

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Factsheet: Cardboard Shredders
Download Free PDF


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Download this short factstheet with information about cardboard shredders. Use this sheet in a meeting or share it with your colleagues.

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Personal advice about cardboard shredders

Want to know the price of a cardboard shredder? Or do you want to know more about these machines? Then request a free quote.
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Step Up: Recycle, Reuse & Reduce

The three arrows of the recycling symbol represent the three main stages of the recycling process: recycling, reusing and reducing. Together the arrows form a closed loop. Step up and implement eco-friendly replacements in your daily life.

recycling-trilogy

Join the movement! Step Up the waste hierarchy together to a goal of Zero Waste.

By Recycling.com/ 24 June 2020 Shares