Friday, May 4, 2012 Review: Swingline EX10-05 Light-Duty Cross-Cut Shredder

Shoplet recently sent this totally awesome, very useful-in-every-office-and-home office supply: a document shredder. And to top it off, it's a SWINGLINE shredder! The Swingline EX10-05 Light-Duty Cross-Cut shredder to be exact. I am honored to have been selected for this review - thank you Shoplet!
Box Shredder
Nice, bright green packaging! Surprisingly, not very heavy, and EVERYTHING in the packaging was recyclable - the plastic, the styrofoam, and the box! Way to go Swingline!

Features (from Shoplet)
  • Protect personal information with this light-duty cross-cut shredder that's great for everyday shredding needs, like destroying unopened junk mail. 
  • Specialty shredding: powerful blades also cut through CDs, staples, paper clips and credit cards.
  • Super-quiet operation and easy-to-use controls make it ideal for individual and home office use.
  • Wastebin capacity - 5 gallons
  • Daily usage level - light (for one user)
  • Width of slot - 9"
  • Sheet capacity - 10 sheets
  • Temperature indicator to prevent overheating

Not Yet Assembled
Some assembly required but if I can figure it out, anyone can! It all just slips together anyway. It's very obvious how to put it together.
This paper shredder is all black with a viewing window in the front of the bin, and silver features on top. It is just under knee height so it will fit perfectly or next to a desk. It has rounded edges and is smooth plastic. The shredding mechanism is built into the "lid" and has a handle for easy pick up when the bin needs emptying. There are two bins - the main large one for paper, and a smaller, removable one for the CD slot. Overall, it is very a sleek paper shredder and will not be an eyesore in your home or office. Be aware, paper shredders are top-heavy because of the blades contained in the lid. Fortunately, it is properly balanced so it won't tip over.
Front of Shredder
From the front - the viewing window into the bin!
Top of Shredder
From the top. Note the warnings along the slot there - be careful with long hair, ties, little kids, etc. Buttons are self explanatory - reverse, off, auto/on, forward. 
New Blades
Nice, clean blades! 
What do I like?
There are many features that I love about this shredder. To begin with: it's a cross shredderCross cutting slices the shreds up more than just a regular paper shredderThat makes it even harder (really, it's almost impossible) for someone to come along and reassemble your private documents and information. Cross cutters are very good for protecting you. Would I shred an entire junk mail envelope? No, because some places don't recycle shredded material, so I'd still open it up and only take out the pages with my name/address on it, and recycle the rest as usual. 
Shreds In Bin
Confetti! This is about five pages worth. 
Cross Cut Paper Shreds
Umm...yeah...imagine reassembling this? Someone is going to have to REALLY want your information to spend time trying to piece this back together.
As I mentioned, it is extremely easy to assemble. Although it comes with instructions, they are not needed! The entire thing is very user friendly, right down to the easy to understand buttons on the top.

The Swingline EX10-05 Light-Duty Cross-Cut shredder can cut through staples. I absolutely hate picking staples out of pages. It's tedious and I usually stick myself with them. It's very easy to just pop a packet of pages into the shredder and not worry about the staples. If it jams, it'll auto-reverse - yes, on its own - and back the papers out so you won't have to go digging around in it - a task that can be surprisingly dangerous. You should never have to come into contact with the blades of this paper shredder.
I also like the window so you can see how full the container is getting. It's hard to tell how much space you're filling up when your papers are being cross cut. This helps keep maintenance and clean up easy, and it's more convenient than having a solid container. 

In addition and of important - it's a quiet paper shredder. I had a paper shredder once that produced so much dust and was so loud that we'd leave it on the patio and shred outside (which was really a pain...especially when it was dark and I had concerns about spiders hiding in it). At least you can keep this one inside, and there's no dust blowing out of it!
I also appreciate the fact that there are two separate bins for the shredded materials. If your recycling company takes shredded paper, this will save you the hassle of having to pick out the shredded CDs/DVDs, and will protect your fingers from cuts from the shards. Plus, the benefit to having separate blades for CDs/DVDs is that it reduces the wear and tear on the main blades, which will help them last longer.

Shredded CD
Watch those fingers! These things are sharp!
There is a safety feature - when the lid is on and the power is on, the power light is green. That's perfect. But what if you have a curious little one (or a big one) who insists on coming along and taking the lid off to see what's going on? Fortunately, when the lid is lifted, the power shuts off, so no curious fingers will get hurt!
Light On Off Shredder
Note on the left: the green light is on when the lid is attached. On the right: as soon as the lid is removed, the power to the blades shuts off. 
What don't I like?
I feel as though the body could have incorporated recycled materials. I know I'm always harping about plastics being recycled instead of new plastics, but why should we continue producing new plastics when there is so much recycled plastic? However, I am happy to report that the plastic bins are recyclable plastic. 

I also think it would be useful to have a way to attach the lid to the bin, such as with clips, so if I wanted to move the whole shredder, I don't have to grab the bin to move it - I could just use the handle on the top. I would feel better knowing it was closed too, in the event that my ever so helpful felines decided to crash into the whole thing and knock it over. 

The recommended shred bags are GBC shredder bags. Personally, I don't understand the need for shred bags. Either these items can go into a bigger bag with your other recycling materials, or can just be disposed of in a garbage bag with the rest of your garbage (if shredded materials are not accepted by your recycling company). I abhor the use of single-use plastic bags! If you really must use bags, you can reuse regular-sized store bags as well.
Regular Store Bag Fits
Regular store bag fits into the container. 
Other things to be aware of?
The bin does fill up quickly, even though it's a 5 gallon capacity. The paper shreds won't pack down right away, and I noticed after shredding about 20 pages, the shreds started piling up and got into the CD/DVD collection bin. Not the end of the world, just something to keep in mind.

Another thing is after the 20 pages of shredding, the blades had a lot of paper shreds stuck to it. This did not affect the performance whatsoever, but if you were to lift the lid off the bin and move it over your floor, it may drop shreds and make a bit of a mess.
Blades After 2 Pages
After five pages.
Blades After 20 Pages
After 20 pages.
Shoplet - $171.15 and free shipping (also available with quantity discounts)

This Swingline EX10-05 Light-Duty Cross-Cut shredder is a good, reliable, and easy to use product. It has many features that are handy for both home or office use. Paper shredders aren't cheap. Well, you can get cheap shredders but they are just that: cheap shredders. If you have a lot of private documents and are concerned about keeping your identity private, having a proper and efficient shredder can ease your headaches. Don't be shocked by the price tag of this one. You're paying for many useful features! And you can't go wrong with Swingline. 

**I was provided one or more of these products for review, but all opinions are my own!


Shangching CH said...

You gave me such a great idea of lining the shredder bin with shopping bags.  I dreaded emplying out all the shreds because knowing my clumsy self, I usually tipped over the container and I wind up sweep up all the pieces (or seeing the feline rolling in the shreds).  

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