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HQ 082036

October 3, 1988

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 082036 CMR


TARIFF NO.: 5605.00.0000; 310.6055

Mr. Andras Bende
Bende & Sons, Inc.
180 Autumn Street
Passaic, New Jersey 07055

RE: Classification of synthetic metalized yarns

Dear Mr. Bende:

This ruling is in response to your letter of March 24, 1988, requesting the tariff classification of synthetic metalized yarns from Japan.


You have requested that we classify the submitted synthetic metalized yarns in item 312.3000, Tariff Schedules of the United States Annotated (TSUSA), since the military is allowing their use as an option in place of all metallic yarn which is classified in item 312.3000, TSUSA. The synthetic metalized yarns are used in the manufacturing of military ornamental lace and embroidery, and are imported from Japan. Three samples of yarn were submitted, along with samples of end products produced by you in the United States with the yarn: ornamental lace, embroidery, and yarn lace.

The submitted samples of yarn consist of synthetic metalized yarn in three colors: gold, silver, and aluminum. The yarns consist of a synthetic metallic filament wound evenly around a synthetic man-made fiber core. The gold yarn (class 8) consists of a gold colorant encased in clear polyester film, 0.005 inches in thickness with a metallic-silver surface. The silver metallic filament (class 9) consists of a metallic aluminum encased or laminated between clear polyester film. The silver metallic filament (class 10) consists of pure silver encased between a clear polyester film, 0.005 inches in thickness. The yarns are wholly of man-made fiber filament, and are wrapped or gimped.


Is the synthetic metalized yarn in chief value of tinsel wire or lame, and therefore classifiable in item 312.3000, TSUSA, as requested?


Classification of an article must be based on application of the provisions of the tariff schedule and applicable case law. While the military specifications for synthetic metallic yarn were somewhat helpful in describing the yarn, military speci- fications do not affect the classification of the submitted yarn. In addition, the fact that the military allows the use of the synthetic metalized yarn in place of the metalized yarn currently classified in item 312.3000, TSUSA, will not affect its classi- fication. The synthetic metalized yarn must be classified according to its own composition. Its classification is not determined by the classification of the article it is replacing.

You requested that we consider classification of the synthetic metalized yarn in item 312.3000, TSUSA. For the reasons which follow, classification of the yarn in this item number would be incorrect.

Item 312.3000, TSUSA, specifically provides for metalized yarns. Schedule 3, Part 1, Subpart F, Headnote 1(a), TSUSA, defines metalized yarns as "yarns, in chief value, but not wholly, of tinsel wire and lame." In order to be classified in item 312.3000, TSUSA, the synthetic metalized yarn must meet the definition in the headnote.

Tinsel wire and lame are described in the 1948 Summaries of Tariff Information, Volume 3, Part 5, page 104, as follows:

Tinsel wire is round wire composed chiefly of copper or brass. It is usually coated or plated with a bright metal, such as real or imitation gold or silver and it is also produced in colors. Lame (a French word) (lahn in Germany) is manufactured by passing the tinsel wire through metal rollers which flatten it into various widths depending on the gage of the wire; it is often subjected to ornamental corrugating or coloring processes. Bullions are made by twisting lame or lahn to produce hollow spiral forms. Tinsel thread is lame wound around a suitable core such as cotton or silk.

The yarns at issue here are produced by encasing either gold colorants, metallic aluminum or metallic silver between clear polyester film. These yarns are analogous to the yarn which was at issue in Kaplan Products & Textiles Inc. v. United States, 51

CCPA 2, C.A.D. 828 (1963). The yarn in that case was made by bonding transparent cellophane onto both sides of a sheet of aluminum foil, and then slicing the laminated aluminum sheet into narrow widths. The court found that the resulting strips did not "fall within the term lame as used in the Tariff Act." Id. at 6.

Additionally, the Summaries of Trade and Tariff Information, Schedule 3, Volume 2, 1969, page 155, states that while the term lame is applied to various forms of plastic filaments which contain metal, plastic filaments are not tinsel or lame for tariff purposes. The submitted synthetic metalized yarns are precluded from classification in item 312.3000, TSUSA, because they do not fall within the meaning of the terms tinsel wire or lame as used in the headnote.

In Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 078975 dated October 21, 1986, yarn composed of an elastomer core thread wrapped with a nylon yarn was not considered to be plied for tariff purposes. The yarns at issue here are wrapped or gimped, and similar in construction to the yarn at issue in HRL 078975. Therefore, the synthetic metalized yarns are not considered plied or single.


The synthetic metalized yarns are classifiable in the provision for yarns of man-made fibers, other, . . ., other, in item 310.6055, TSUSA, textile category 607. The rate of duty is 15 percent ad valorem.

Under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), the provision for metalized yarns is broader than that under the TSUSA. Under the HTSUSA, synthetic metalized yarns are classifiable in the provision for metalized yarns in subheading 5605.00.0000, HTSUSA, textile category 201. The rate of duty is 15 percent ad valorem. This classification represents the present position of the Customs Service. If changes occur before the effective date of January 1, 1989, this advice may not continue to be applicable.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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