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The Aurora Shredder May Be My Worst Purchase Ever
Written: Jul 1, 2004 (Updated Jul 2, 2004)
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
With daily news stories about the growing problem of identity theft, my family finally bit the bullet and purchased a paper shredder. Images of someone poking through a landfill or garbage can to peruse my old credit card statements and cancelled checks still seem far-fetched, but with prices a fraction of what they were several years ago, caution came cheap.
Unfortunately, the axiom of getting what you pay for still holds true, and the Aurora paper shredder we purchased at Staples is an awful piece of home office equipment that rarely works and never lives up to its marketing promises. Luckily, the machine was almost free after a rebate so we got our moneys worth.
What Did You Say It Would Do?
For starters, forget the sheet capacity claims. At best, you should limit feeding the sheets to no more than three or four at a time and then only if they are lined up straight and are of regular thickness. Feeding more through will likely cause the dreaded paper jam.
Simple. Jams are almost impossible to fix.
A reverse button ostensibly allows the machine to clear its jam, but rarely works as planned and often complicates the problem. I have lost count of the number of times I have sat cross-legged on the floor with the machine unplugged and a chip puller or other tool in my hand, attempting to extricate paper. As I write this, the machine is jammed again, but after ten minutes of hassling with it, I have decided that life is too short.
That is unfortunate because the machine does handle some routine tasks well. The credit card slot, for example, quickly pulverizes outdated or unsolicited cards. Theyre still identifiable, of course, but good luck using them.
Finally, there is some silly usability in the wire mesh basket on which the shredding unit sits. Rather than use a solid container to collect the paper turned confetti, the Aurora uses an easily bendable, flimsy basket that barely supports the units weight. I understand that one uses a liner in any event (a good old kitchen trash bag will do), but why have to look at it? Aside from the obvious cost implication, this is simply bad design.
The Bottom Line
Go ahead, pop the extra few bucks and buy a better shredder or at least an upgraded model. This bargain basement shredder is the automated equivalent of a pair of scissors.
Five Things To Remember From This Review
1) Only buy this if price is absolutely your only criterion.
2) And then postpone the purchase until you can afford a better one
3) Because the machines capacity is overstated in my experience
4) And it jams too often.
5) Dont you have better things to do than clear paper jams? I do. This shredder is being dumped.
Everyone remembers Oliver North and his role in the Iran-Contra scandal, but who knows how history would have turned out if Fawn Hall had to rely on this awful shredder? You can read what really happened from the Washington Posts archives at:
© 2004 Joubert
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Machine age (Months in use): 12
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