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HQ 081535

June 21, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 081535 DFC


TARIFF NO.: 9902.71.04; 8207; 6815.99.4000

Frederick L. Ikenson, Esq.
1621 New Hampshire Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20009

RE: Tariff classification of diamond tool and drill blanks

Dear Mr. Ikenson:

In a letter dated December 30, 1987, you inquired as to the tariff classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), of various diamond tool and drill blanks.


The merchandise involved is diamond tool and drill blanks consisting of polycrystalline diamond, either unmounted or mounted on a tungsten carbide substrate. The diamond blanks will be used in the manufacture of drill bits for oil, gas and mineral exploration or for other mining applications. They are also used in the production of tool bits for machining (turning) of such materials as non-ferrous metals, metal alloys, ceramics, fiberglass, carbon-fiber composites, chipboard and fiberboard. They consist of a layer of synthetic industrial diamond crystals bonded to each other and to a cemented carbide substrate. Two types of tool blanks will be imported - Compax and Stratapax. The Compax blanks are used to make tools for machining a wide range of non-ferrous metals and nonmetallic materials. The Stratapax blanks will be used to make mining drill bits. The blanks will be imported in the form of materials which, after importation, will be ground and shaped into various types of cutting tools and mining drill bits.


What is the proper tariff classification of the diamond tool and drill blanks?


The mounted diamond tool blanks are classified in heading 8207, HTSUSA, and are thus entitled to free entry under subheading 9902.71.04, HTSUSA, as tool blanks, and drill blanks of industrial diamonds (provided for in subheading 7104.90.50 or heading 8207).

You suggest that the unmounted diamond blanks are classifiable under subheading 7102.29.00, HTSUSA, as diamonds, whether or not worked, but not mounted or set, industrial, unworked or simply sawn, cleaved or bruted, other and entitled to duty-free entry.

Headquarters Ruling Letter 071744, dated November 28, 1984, described polycrystalline diamonds used in mining and construction drilling as a Geoset diamond developed by General Electric for use as bits for soft to medium hard rock formations. The Geoset diamonds were said to have been advanced from mere synthetic diamonds to articles made out of diamonds. Your suggested classification under subheading 7102.2900, HTSUSA, providing for industrial diamonds is a provision covering single crystal diamonds. The subject diamonds are polycrystalline, which renders the proposed classification inapplicable.

In view of the foregoing, it is our position that the polycrystalline Geoset and Formset diamond blanks that will be imported unmounted are classifiable under subheading 6815.99.4000, HTSUSA, as articles of stone or other mineral substances (including articles of peat), not elsewhere specified or included, other articles, other, other, with duty at the rate of 4.5 percent ad valorem.


The mounted diamond tool blanks are classifiable under subheading 8207.12.6000, and are temporarily entitled to free entry under subheading 9902.71.04, HTSUSA.

The polycrystalline Geoset and Formset diamond blanks are classifiable under subheading 6815.99.4000, HTSUSA.


John Durant, Director

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