Embassy 6 Sheet Strip Cut Shredder

Date Wed, June 10 2009

I’m pretty sure I blogged about my need of a paper shredder to light – moderate work. I pretty much just need it for once a month bill shredding and some miscellaneous shredding here and there. Unfortunately, several months of bills had accumulated while I searched for an affordable but not completely craptacular shredder. The internet just wasn’t helpful. Amazon had shredders which were whole units as opposed to can-top shredders and most of the ones in the price range I wanted were rated pretty badly.

So I wasn’t expecting to find anything when I was at Target. Lo and behold! They had a can-top shredder for a little under $12. Good price. Even if it didn’t work, I wouldn’t be out much or I could just return it. I tried to guage if the shredder would fit over my standard sized kitchen trash can and thought it would so I walked about with an Embassy 6 Sheet Strip Cut Shredder.

Unfortunately, I can’t find my shredder anywhere online and Target doesn’t even list Embassy products on the site but the store had several different Embassy shredders in stock, with the one I chose being the cheapest. However, if you wanted a “sure thing”, you could easily spend a little more and get something a little sturdier.

So I got my shredder home and realized even with the extendy “arm”, it was a bit short for my trash can lengthwise and it’s a bit longer width-wise so I can’t set it securely on the can but I can rest it width-wise and as long as I’m not trying to shred a gremlin (also, gremlin shredding is messy). I also held the shredder between my knees with a plastic bags strung over the handles but this didn’t work amazingly. Honestly, I think a shredder with basket is the best option but I can make due with the can-top style just fine.

It’s definitely louder than I would expect such a small machine to be so if you need to shred discreetly (because the IRS is in the other room?!), then this isn’t for you. I can deal with it on a monthly basis, though. It’s also pretty easy to use. There’s 1 switch for all functions. Off is in the middle position, left is reverse and right is normal shredding. It was actually set to reverse when I plugged it in. When in normal mode, paper must be inserted before it starts going but reverse goes automatically. There’s also a credit card slot which I haven’t had opportunity to use.

The machine itself has some little logos which let you know you can shred 6 sheets at a time. Don’t shred paperclips and keep your hands away from the blades. Watch your hair and neckties (good advice) and don’t let your kid shred. There’s also some icon that looks like.. a fire extinguisher or helium tank so.. Don’t try to shred either of those.The box says the shredder is staple safe but it doesn’t say this anywhere else on the machine or instructions so removed mine just in case. There’s also a sticker that says to unfold envelopes.

The first thing I wanted to shred were old checkbooks including the carbon copy pages which are very thin, like tissue paper. Unfortunately, the shredder didn’t like those papers because of size and thickness. It took me forever to shred a checkbook and I actually resorted to cutting up some of the last few pages. The shredder had a tendency to pull the papers in crookedly and shred most of it but not all so I’d have to back it up and, at the point, finish the job manually or tears the sheets apart because it wouldn’t re-shred.

The Embassy shredder performed much better with regular 8.5″ x 11″ papers – like your typical copy/printer/fax/letter paper. I was even able to test with multiple sheets of paper and it did work. I noticed that it got exponentially louder as I added sheets of paper. The shredder worked best when I was continually feeding paper into it, instead of letting it stop in between (but I’m not very good at that, haha).

This machine is supposed to be jam-free in that you can reverse the feed. This works better with standard size/thickness paper. I did turn off and unplug the machine to stick my nail file into the little holes to poke out a couple blobs of paper so in the event that you have a jam that the reverse doesn’t fix, it’s pretty accessible for you to clean it out yourself.

Lastly, I’d like to touch on something which some might consider a feature. If this machine overheats – which it does – it will shut down. You must unplug it and let it cool down before it starts again. I suppose this is good. Fires are bad, right? Yet, it’s annoying. You must unplug it otherwise it won’t reset or whatever. It overheated twice after the checkbooks and I became, understandably frustrated, but the last time I ran 30 full-size sheets through without problems.

For $12, I could’ve done worse. My Embassy shredder didn’t kick ass but it works well enough for standard paper, which is mostly what I need it for. I think it’ll do fine for my monthly shredding needs but I may just need to manually cut checkbooks. You win some, you lose some.

21 Responses

  1. amanda November 10 2009 @ 7:28 pm

    I purchased the 6 sheet Embassy shredder from Target as well about 5 months ago. I’ve used it about 3 times and it’s completly broken. It will only work in reverse and is useless to me. Of course i threw out the box and receipt.

  2. Cole November 10 2009 @ 7:40 pm

    I’m sorry to hear that.

  3. Susan December 21 2009 @ 10:00 pm

    I just bought this very shredder from Target, for the same reasons as you, and wish I had done some (any) internet research first. I have now only quasi-successfully shredded three sheets of smaller-than-average size paper. The thing jammed up every time (and I was feeding these sheets individually). Trying the reverse then forward method of clearing the jam resulted in getting the stuck pieces all balled up where I can’t reach them with tweazers and the thing has overheated. Did I mention this is after three smaller-than-normal sheets of individually fed paper?

    If anyone else is considering this shredder, save yourself the trouble and buy a pair of scissors.

  4. Cole December 21 2009 @ 10:36 pm

    I’ve found the printer type paper is the best shredded but have had to break out a paperclip and poke out the jammed paper on more than one occasion. I do hope this review it helpful to other folks, in the future!

  5. ash December 23 2009 @ 10:10 am

    I bought this last summer and was able to use it ok for my now and then shredding (tho even then was surprised by how quickly it jammed). But I now have a bunch of past taxes stuff that needs to be shredded. After 5 minutes it started clogging. I continually had to unplug and unclog it to work, till finally I got sick of it and tossed the thing. I agree with the above – a pair of scissors would work better than this. Pity, because usually Target stuff is pretty good, but this is pretty sorry

  6. Cole December 23 2009 @ 11:14 am

    Eh, any store can sell some less than exiting products.

  7. angelo January 2 2010 @ 3:02 pm

    has anyone found a website or anything having to do with embassy shredders?
    i cant find reviews either.
    its like they don’t exist.
    i just bought a 8 sheet quiet series diamond cut shredder TQ80Mc from target today for $38.
    figured i would come home and research it to see if its any good.

  8. Cole January 2 2010 @ 4:42 pm

    I don’t know of a website, sorry. It could be that these shredders are made by another manufacturer but sold under the Embassy name as a sort of “house brand” for target.

  9. David February 21 2010 @ 4:38 pm

    I found a website listed on the back of my shredder. http://www.ShredCare.com I have been fortunate “knock on wood” to have no problems. I also am only using for personal use about once every week or so. I hope this helps. My only complaint which I am trying to verify is I thought I purchased a cross cut but it soes not appear to be a cross cut model.

  10. David February 21 2010 @ 4:39 pm

    @angelo: Try http://www.shredcare.com

  11. Cole February 23 2010 @ 11:51 am

    My model is not a cross shredder, nor do I believe it was advertised as such but Embassy does make several models so this certainly won’t apply to all of them.

    Also, I took a look at that website and my model is not on there, nor are any of the ‘can top’ style shredders but perhaps it can help someone anyway.

  12. SK May 2 2010 @ 12:18 am

    Thanks a lot for the tip. I could not find info anywhere about the heating except on your blog here.

  13. Cole May 2 2010 @ 1:13 am

    Glad I could help!

  14. Weylin Piegorsch June 13 2010 @ 6:08 pm

    You might also try http://www.paper-shredder-reviews.com/ … I also couldn’t find Embassy there either, but at a quick glance it seemed to have the info I was looking for.

  15. CD August 10 2010 @ 12:53 pm

    I bought the Embassy 6-sheet cross cut at Target for about $25. Have about 10 years worth of old papers, credit cards, etc. and shredded about 15 buckets full on first day. The feed is working very well, no jams yet. Works best with 2-3 sheets at once, not 5-6. The only issue is the overheating like Cole said. It occurs after about 5 minutes of continuous shredding, or about enough to fill the bucket. Then need to wait about 20-30 minutes to cool down before start another batch. Annoying when doing a massive batch, but probably not a big problem if just doing a few sheets here and there.

  16. Mr Concept September 11 2010 @ 1:20 pm

    I have an embassy shredder and it randomly stopped. The center of the grinder looks clogged, but I dont know how that happened. I don’t shred more then 1 or 2 pages in it. Now the motor makes noise but the blades dont turn. I wish I knew how to fix this!

  17. Malimber ConDoin October 29 2010 @ 12:31 am

    Hi does anyone still have your Embassy Paper Shredder Model: TQ82Mc with wire mesh basket sold by Target. I am looking for a couple it does not have to be working. Thank you.

  18. john August 8 2011 @ 11:44 am

    I got it and it works sometimes but never when I realy need it. it quites out many times. It shreds 1 out of 20 sheets. Not worth it

  19. sko August 29 2011 @ 7:57 pm

    I do have that very shredder.

  20. Sally January 22 2013 @ 2:29 am

    My Embassey 8 sheet microcut stopped working in the shedding mode when the basket was half full. I was careful to stopped shedding after a few minutes, because of the heating up motor. I am returning it to Office Depot. I have the box and the receipt. $99.00………sigh what a bummer. I guess I have to pay more and get a Fellows……sigh

  21. Cole January 22 2013 @ 5:22 pm

    That’s unfortunate

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