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HQ 084551

August 9, 1989

CLA-2:CO:R:C:V 084551 JAS


TARIFF NO.: 8466.10.0070

Mr. Keith Kroll
Venture Stores
P.O. Box 110
O'Fallon, Missouri 63366-0110

RE: Tool Kit

Dear Mr. Kroll:

In your letter of April 4, 1989, to the Area Director of Customs, New York Seaport, you inquire as to the tariff classification of the Alltrade 41-piece tool kit, from Taiwan. A sample was submitted. Our ruling follows.


The merchandise in question consists of 23 screwdriver bits, 14 wrench sockets, a 1-inch socket adapter, a 4-inch extender, and 1 ratchet handle, all contained in a molded plastic case.

You maintain the tool kit is classifiable under the provision for tools of two or more of headings 8202 to 8205, put up in sets for retail sale, in subheading 8206.00.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA).


Is the tool kit classifiable as claimed, or under another HTSUSA provision?


The sockets, adapter, and extender are classifiable under the provision for hand operated spanners and wrenches; socket wrenches, with or without handles, drives or extensions, and
base metal parts, in heading 8204. The screwdriver bits are classifiable as interchangeable tools for handtools, whether or not power-operated (for example, for screwdriving,) in heading 8207. The ratchet handle is classifiable as a tool holder for any type of tool for working in the hand, in heading 8466. Because the kit does not contain tools of two or more of headings 8202 to 8205, it does not qualify for classification in subheading 8206.00.0000, HTSUSA.

General Rule of Interpretation (GRI) 1, HTSUSA, states in part that for legal purposes, classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. Goods that are, prima facie, classifiable under two or more headings, are classifiable in accordance with GRI 3, HTSUSA. GRI 3(a) states in part that when two or more headings each refer to part only of the items in a set put up for retail sale, those headings are to be regarded as equally specific, even if one heading gives a more precise description of the goods.

The instant tool kit consists of at least two different articles that are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings. It consists of articles put up together to carry out a specific activity (i.e., to tighten and loosen fasteners). Finally, the articles are put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repacking. Therefore, the kit in question is within the term "goods put up in sets for retail sale." GRI 3(b) states in part that goods put up in sets for retail sale, which cannot be classified by reference to 3(a), are to be classified as if they consisted of the component which gives them their essential character.

The factor or factors which determine essential character will vary with the goods. However, the nature of a component and its relation to the use of the goods are often factors to be considered. In this case, the ratchet handle is necessary for the use of the screwdriver bits and the sockets. Moreover, the adapter and extender are designed to be used with the ratchet handle to facilitate use of the sockets and bits, respectively. Finally, the ratchet handle is the only component in the kit that is continually in use. We therefore conclude that the ratchet handle imparts the essential character to the tool kit.


The Alltrade 41-piece tool kit is classifiable under the provision for other tool holders and self-opening dieheads, in subheading 8466.10.0070, HTSUSA. The rate of duty is 4.9 percent.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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