Tag: shears


If you are here reading this Blog, then you’re either looking for recycling machinery or (like us) love machinery.

The task of selecting recycling machinery to do a job is always very difficult. You’re never sure until some time after any machine is installed if you made a good choice or bad choice.

There is a lot more to machines that meets the eye.  Hunting for a good machine that’s right for you can be tricky to say the least. So much “know how” of the manufacturer does not appear in any brochure or machine description. This type of information is kept fairly secret and it’s normally the accumulation of years of hard work making constant improvements to machines. It’s the result of sending machines to site and then monitoring how they run.  We all want to be better than our competitors so even if they ( our competitors)  tie us to a chair and rip our fingernails out we’ll never tell them how we solved a problem and why we are better than they are…

Recycling Machinery by GPS Processing Solutions

With recycling machinery, the bad news is that it is even worse than in other industries because the problem is always the scrap.  So for example if we were transporting sand through a machinery the sand is fairy uniform.. Now lets think about  scrap. No two loads of scrap fed to a machine are ever the same and so it’s hard to foresee how a machine will handle scrap..

What type of recycling machinery do you really need?

The only way to answer the question..”what machine is needed for our types of scrap” is to  know, having witnessed a particular  machine’s performance on site with various scrap types..

Buyers who invest in a low priced recycling machinery, who went for a deal that seemed too good to be true (as their first ever machine normally)  often end up with burnt fingers. The machines don’t perform, they either don’t have the hoped for capacity or they are unreliable or the product they make is not very good quality..

All above mentioned problems are like a cancer to any company and should be avoided. However without experience it’s hard to get the job of selecting any machine right. So if you are considering machinery, the cheapest (no matter how tempting the price is)  is often not the best and in most cases it is the worst.  Why? Because a badly manufactured or badly conceived machine will never perform, and they are almost impossible to put right..

Check the running cost

Don’t just look at the price tag, also consider the running cost, here is an example:

If you are spending for example 15 Euro per ton to shear (with the wrong machine, and this is a common figure for badly made machines) when you could be spending just 7 Euro per ton (with the right machine) then every 100,000 tons you processed you’ve paid and extra 800,000 in processing costs (800,000 will buy you a new heavy duty shear!) But it doesn’t stop there, shearing can cost as little as 4 or 5 per ton. So is the cheap machine robbing you of your profit, and your future? And this means that all the time the machine is being used on site it will be holding back your business from growing  Instead it’s like a weight the company has to carry..

Unfortunately this happens more than scrap companies care to admit.  But it’s noticeable the second time a company wants to buy a machine, they may still not know for sure what they want, but the are 100% clear what they don’t want.. It’s a hard and painful way to learn for clients in our industry  We do our best to give the best assistance we can, sometimes we know that “saying it like it is” to use a well known expression doesn’t win you any friends and potentially will lose us orders but in the long run it’s better to lose an order than sell the wrong machine to a client.

Pierluigi Sambolino


The process of selecting the proper tool for your scrap processing necessities can be quite nerve breaking at times.

What type of scrap do you really need to process? What kind of finished product are you expecting to obtain? Do you only need to shear scrap  or will you occasionally want also to bale or log scrap? These are the key questions you should focus on. Ideally you would like the equipment to process everything but  keep in mind that this might be quite uneconomical for you.

 Defining the proper equipment size

If you run an average scrap yard you will have all sorts of scrap just waiting to be processed and shipped to your buyer. The question is how can you process the material with a minimal impact on your margins? Every time you move the material it will cost you, even if it’s just within your own yard. The decision to implement your operation with a scrap shear or shear & baler/logger is in most cases the correct one. But now the question. How big should this shear be? What capacities should you consider?     

Ideally a shear or shear/baler should be able to process 85-90% of your material’s thickness leaving the remaining quantities to be processed with torch or crane mounted shears. Buying a shear that will be able to process over that percentage will unnecessarily raise your processing costs also on the lighter materials reducing your margins more than it would cost to process the remaining by torch.

The shear should have a nominal capacity of 150% your current requirements. The moment you have a shear installed your average quantities will increase. Higher margins will allow you to be more competitive when buying scrap.

If you are in need to process also bales and logs and you have no specific balers on site you may also consider purchasing a hybrid shear and baler/logger all in one. This machine will guarantee the maximum flexibility as you can produce both sheared scrap, tight bales and shredder logs. When considering the capacities you should carefully consider how much production of each product type you require.

Whatever piece of equipment you decide to purchase consider carefully where to position inside your yard. It may be necessary to change the way scrap is currently stockpiled in your yard. The optimum solution is to obtain a situation where scrap does not need to be moved more than necessary inside the yard.

Ideally the unprocessed scrap is stockpiled next to the shear while the processed scrap is conveyed to a drop-off location by rotating conveyor.

Consequences and implications of wrong decisions 

As you have seen there are quite some factors to consider and while apparently the decision is easy in reality most of the time it can be quite complex. The wrong shear or the incorrect positioning of the shear within the yard can have disastrous consequences for your operations. Most of the time oversize shears are bought – “just to be on the safe side”. This will have a negative impact on your margins.

For this reason at GPS Scrap Processing Solutions we always consider all these aspects together with you before finalizing a proposal.

You can start your search by checking out our equipment finder page.

Marco Garuti


Speaking with different scrap companies who are buying ELV end of life vehicles for baling or processing it seems odd to me that considering the cars are roughly the same and always either large family  cars, medium cars or city cars, the opinion about what lids work the best varies so much.  GPS have two styles of car baler lids if you check our website, the M5 & M6 style which are a kind of wrap around system and the Predator which have a wrap around but with the addition of a hammer lid that doubles the lid forces.  Both work differently but achieve ultimately the same result, they determine the height and width of the ELV car bale, the length is determined by the long pusher rams.  Even though the ELV car baler main pusher rams on the M5 & M6 and predator seem to get all the credit for “making the car bale” because they are the biggest cylinders installed on the car baler (any car baler in fact ),  if you look at the cylinders singularly, yes they get all the  “glory” as we say (and get to brag about it in the bar with a beer!), ironically it’s the lids cylinders that have the most difficult job to do.

When you’re processing old scrapped cars, the bit which is most challenging is closing the lids, not the final compaction of making the bale, by this I mean from the operators point of view.  It’s important to note that when you read specifications about car balers, much of what is written does not actually tell you what you need to know, presumably if you’re reading this blog, you’re interested in processing ELVs, (if not you should get a life!)


So why do I say the specifications are meaningless? Here’s why. Archimedes of born c. 287 bce, Syracuse, Sicily [Italy]—died 212/211 bce, Syracuse.. (So he didn’t travel much).. And don’t all rush. He didn’t make balers either!  Ok what did Archimedes say about balers. Nothing directly but a he encapsulated a very important point relating your baler lids in the following phrase  “Give me a place to stand and with a lever I will move the whole world.” which means to you and me.. The same hydraulic cylinder applied with different leverage lengths will give you different forces on the lids, so well applied they give more force on the lids and badly applied they give less force.  Engineering is like Mathematics, its fact and not opinion.  So it’s not enough just to look at cylinder forces as listed, it’s also the mechanical part of the baler and how it takes advantage of the available forces from the cylinders that is the important bit.  And there we have it! So the mechanical design of the lids is as important as the stated cylinder forces, its a shame that the design side is never really pointed to, and does this explain why I get such strongly manifested opinions from clients for or against, but in many cases I realise that maybe they’re a bit myopic in their views and don’t do what I call good business by looking impartially at what’s being presented.

And if you’re thinking I’m wrong, then the alternative is even worse considering that maybe my lids with exceptionally good leverages will close on a scrap car that your lids won’t.. What does that mean, your cylinders don’t give the same force as you were promised?  This is a worrying thought to have while your there depolluting your ELV’s getting them ready for the car car baler to crush them into bales and then send the bales to a shredder as shredder feed. So as said, we have two systems of lids at GPS on your car crushers. The M5 and M6 have a kind of deep feeding box with a lid that comes from the top and can wrap round the scrapped car, a bit like your own fingers when you pick up some sand on the beach for example, this system is easy to use if you put the scrap or scrap car insides the box without any hanging over the edge.. It’s’  just one sweeping movement, the Predator  is more like you have your palm up facing toward the sky and you still wrap your fingers up as if you want to crush say an empty aluminium drink can (UBC) but in addition we have a lid that comes down from the top (hinged where your wrist is if we use the idea of your hand still)  and this pushes down on your fingers doubling the the force, it’s a bit like when you use both hands to crush up something into a ball you have more force than one hand alone.  This is the real difference and advantage about our designs for car balers and car crushers.. Opinions evaporate when surrounded by facts.

So if you keep in mind that we’re very tuned to the mechanical advantages and applications of forces at GPS and contact us for a quote, for sure we’ll be offering you a truly competitive and well conceived piece of equipment..  So credit where credit is due.. Thank you Archimedes for showing the way.. And If you hadn’t died 1800 years ago you’d be head of engineering at GPS by now for sure!