Allison transmissions selected for efficient and secure document shredding

With long and demanding duty cycles, Allison’s fully automatic transmissions help shredding companies improve fleet efficiency; technology responds to changing information security demands with faster throughput rates and increased productivity.  

MILLBROOK, UK – With growing concerns regarding data protection and the careful disposal of private and confidential information, shredding has evolved from office-based units into a fully outsourced service, requiring specialised trucks to destroy confidential documents in an efficient and safe manner.

Canadian company Shred-Tech specifies and supplies mobile shredding trucks globally. Eighty per cent of those shipped to the UK are the Allison-equipped MDX-1 shredding trucks. These are assembled by coach and truck body builders, EH Hutton’s, in Melton Mowbray, before they are distributed to professional shredding companies which offer businesses, ranging from large corporations to small offices, large-scale secure document and data destruction.

Two trucks in one – a specification for high security shredding 

The MDX-1’s key feature is its ability to shred material in two different sizes – one to meet NAID AAA classification and the other at DIN 4 specification – within one unit, to meet the growing needs of clients that require an extra level of high security shredding compliant with specific European and UK regulations, including the Data Protection Act. The MDX-1’s dual shredding capacity means that mobile shredding companies, which would previously have had to send two trucks with different shredding units to a site, now only need to send one.

“The MDX-1 is essentially two shredding trucks in one,” says Joe Roberto, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Shred-Tech. “This means the truck can help shredding companies reduce costs and improve the efficiency of their shredding operation.

“In some cities, where congestion can turn a 20 minute drive into a two hour journey, using one truck per job can significantly reduce fuel consumption and deliver cost-effective time savings. Such efficiency measures can help shredding companies maintain a healthy bottom line.”

To achieve this dual function, the MDX-1 exploits the dual power take off (PTO) provisions found on the Allison 3000 Series fully automatic transmission. The PTOs power the hydraulic pumps that operate the two shredding units; this avoids the need to have two separate engines to power the truck and shredder unit respectively. 

The use of a DAF LF55 16 tonne chassis presents Shred-Tech with easy access to the 3000 transmission’s PTOs. Shred-Tech has a long association with DAF, as the chassis complements the reliability and functions of the Allison transmissions. 

Thanks to this PTO configuration, the MDX-1 can shred approximately three tonnes of paper per hour compared to 450 kg that shredding units could manage 12 years ago. When running in the smaller shred size high-security mode, the MDX-1 still has a notable throughput in excess of a tonne per hour.

To achieve this impressive hourly throughput, the MDX-1 benefits from Allison technology that enables rapid switching and simultaneous operation of both shredders at the touch of a button – the secondary high-security shredder can be engaged and powered up within four seconds.  As such, Allison transmissions help drive overall productivity and efficiency.

Eliminating downtime for efficiency gains

Shred-Tech traditionally specifies Allison’s fully automatic transmissions for many of the trucks within its document destruction range. The company cites the choice to Allison Transmission’s proven reputation for designing and manufacturing fully automatic transmissions that are reliable, robust and require little maintenance between lengthy duty cycles.

The well-known durability of the Allison 3000 Series transmission in the MDX-1 can help end users avoid costly unscheduled maintenance requirements. As the fully automatic transmission takes care of the gearshifts for the driver while traveling between client destinations, the driver benefits from smooth gear changes, avoiding miss-shifts and repetitive strain that can occur from operating a manual transmission. Therefore, the use of an Allison transmission reduces strain on both the driver and the driveline, helping to deliver higher productivity and efficiency – thus healthier profit margins through the reduction of downtime.

Effective shredding in the UK   

Shredding services company, PHS Datashred has eight MDX-1s in its shredding truck fleet. Purchased from UK importer, Global Recycling Solutions, PHS Datashred uses the dual shredding function of the MDX-1 trucks to carry out a range of shredding operations tailored to clients from blue chip companies, government and local authorities to legal practitioners and more.

“Due to client requirements, each operation requires a different approach,” says Ian Walsh the Transport Manager at PHS Datashred. “The dual shredding functionality on the MDX-1s enables us to carry out the varied job specifications without requiring numerous different trucks.”

“This shredding capacity allows PHS Datashred to be more efficient in both operational activity and fuel consumption,” adds Walsh. “The specification and functionality of the trucks plays an important factor in driving the success of our business.” 

Each of PHS Datashred’s MDX-1 trucks carries out duty cycles between eight and eleven hours per day, whereby each truck will shred on average 3.5 to 4 tonnes of documentation per day culminating in a mean daily total of approximately 50 tonnes for the entire fleet. 

“The MDX-1 can shred at almost double the rate of our previous models, with average throughput improving from 1.7 tonnes per hour to around 3 tonnes per hour,” explains Walsh “This has the benefit of driving efficiency in terms of operation and fuel consumption per kilogram of material shredded.  The MDX-1 allows us to achieve reductions in CO2 emissions per tonne processed by approximately 45 per cent.”

For many of PHS Datashred’s clients, time and permissible parking stay is at a premium – so the shredding company makes used of the simultaneous dual shredding capacity that’s afforded by the PTOs on the Allison transmission. This enables PHS Datashred to deliver the fast, effective and secure service that its clients expect.

PHS Datashred has been impressed with the ability to rapidly select and operate the two different shred sizes at the simple touch of a button. To this end, the company owns nearly half of Europe’s MDX-1 shredding trucks and strives to work with shredding vehicle suppliers to develop shredding solutions that offer them even more security and peace of mind.

“The combination of a DAF chassis and Allison transmission results in a shredding truck that is reliable, easy-to-operate and delivers cost-effective and efficient productivity. We have been impressed with the capability of Shred-Tech’s MDX-1 and will be adding five more trucks to our fleet imminently,” Walsh concludes.

14 Oct, 2013


Allison Transmission (NYSE: ALSN) is a leading designer and manufacturer of vehicle propulsion solutions for commercial and defense vehicles, the largest global manufacturer of medium- and heavy-duty fully automatic transmissions, and a leader in electrified propulsion systems that Improve the Way the World Works. Allison products are used in a wide variety of applications, including on-highway trucks (distribution, refuse, construction, fire and emergency), buses (school, transit and coach), motorhomes, off-highway vehicles and equipment (energy, mining and construction applications) and defense vehicles (tactical wheeled and tracked). Founded in 1915, the company is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. With a presence in more than 150 countries, Allison has regional headquarters in the Netherlands, China and Brazil, manufacturing facilities in the USA, Hungary and India, as well as global engineering resources, including electrification engineering centers in Indianapolis, Indiana, Auburn Hills, Michigan and London in the United Kingdom. Allison also has more than 1,400 independent distributor and dealer locations worldwide. For more information, visit