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HQ 085354

June 7, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 085354 TLS


TARIFF NO.: 8419.32.50

Mr. James Caffentzis
Fitch, King, and Caffentzis
116 John Street
New York, New York 10038

RE: Reconsideration of HQ 083183

Dear Mr. Caffentzis:

You request a reconsideration of Customs ruling HQ 083183 pursuant to Part 177 of the Customs Regulations. Your letter dated August 15, 1989 has been received by this office; the following is our response to that request.


An original request was made on October 25, 1988 to our New York office for classification of a Yankee dryer cylinder under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). We issued a ruling on July 12, 1989 (HQ 083183), in which the dryer cylinder was classified under HTSUSA subheading 8419.32.50 as a dryer for paper or paperboard.

In the original ruling, pictures of the Yankee dryer cylinder were submitted along with a description of how it is used in the paper-making process. We also relied on the second edition of Papermaking and Paperboard Making, vol. 3, in reaching our decision.

The cylinder is a cast iron rotating cylinder with a very smooth surface and is 8-20 feet in diameter. It is used between the press and calendering sections of a papermaking machine to dry a continuous paper sheet. The paper sheet is pressed tightly against the hot outer shell of the Yankee cylinder by means of a pressure roller. The outer shell of the cylinder is heated by steam that is passed through the inner space of the cylinder. The heated surface of the cylinder then evaporates moisture from the paper sheet, which dries it. Different types of paper can be produced depending on the drying process used. If the paper is lifted off the cylinder before it is completely dry, then a crepe or tissue-like paper is produced. If the paper is allowed to remain on the cylinder until completely dry, then a glossy surface is produced on the paper, known as machine glazed (MG) paper.


Under which HTS heading is the Yankee drying cylinder properly classifiable:

1) 8439, HTSUSA, covering machinery for making pulp of fibrous cellulosic material or making or finishing paper or paperboard (other than the machinery of heading 8419); parts thereof;

2) 8419, HTSUSA, covering machinery, plant or laboratory equipment, whether or not electrically heated, for the treatment of materials by a process, involving a change of temperature such as heating, cooking, roasting, distilling, rectifying, sterilizing, pasteurizing, steaming, drying, evaporating, vaporizing, condensing or cooling, other than machinery or plant of a kind used for domestic purposes; instantaneous or storage water heaters, nonelectric; parts thereof.


You challenge our decision in ruling HQ 083183 because it does not follow the factual findings of previous classification decisions under TSUS concerning the Yankee dryer cylinder. In doing so, you cite to two instances where Customs has classified the Yankee dryer cylinder under TSUS item 668.06, the equivalent of HTSUSA heading 8439, as a part of a paper-making machine. You also cite to HQ 085355, which noted that Congress has indicated that TSUS rulings should be considered instructive in interpreting the HTSUSA, particularly where the nomenclature previously interpreted in those decisions remain unchanged and no dissimilar interpretation is required by the text of the HTS. See H. Rep. No. 100-576, 100th Cong., 2d Sess. 548 (1988) at 550.

While there was a specific provision for Yankee dryer cylinders under TSUS item 668.05, that particular provision was not carried over under either HTS heading 8419 or 8439. This, of course, is a major change and any decisions under TSUS should not be considered instructive by reason of the legislative history you cite. Furthermore, as noted below, the text of the HTS requires a dissimilar interpretation.

The International Trade Commission report you refer to does in fact call for continuity in the transition from TSUS to HTSUSA in classification cases. We also note that the cross-reference guide contained in the report suggests that TSUS item 668.05, which provided a specific classification item for the Yankee cylinder under TSUS, is cross-referenced to HTSUSA subheading 8439.99.10. We feel compelled to emphasize at this point that the report is not binding in cases under HTSUSA, however. It has been noted that while the intent of the conversion from TSUS to HTSUSA was to be revenue neutral to the extent possible, it was also recognized that the conversion would result in changes in rates of duty in some cases. See Conversion of the Tariff Schedules of the United States Annotated into the Nomenclature Structure of the Harmonized System, USITC Publication 1400, 31 (June 1983). See also Customs Ruling HQ 083891 (May 14, 1989).

In not following the classification decisions concerning the yankee dryer cylinder under TSUS, we do not ignore previously established facts. Rather, we recognize our error in the TSUS cases and the need to correct the erroneous factual findings upon which they are based.

In the original ruling, we were influenced by the fact that the cylinder's drying function is the primary feature of the article. That steam heat is pumped into its hollow interior to warm its surface which in turn dries the paper proves the drying function to be essential to the cylinder's purpose. Given additional information, we acknowledge that the drying function does not account for the dryer cylinder's sole purpose, however.

As noted in HQ 083183, different types of paper can be produced with the cylinder depending on how the paper is lifted from the surface of the cylinder and at what speed it is done. The versatility of the Yankee dryer cylinder in this process is what makes the Yankee dryer cylinder an essential part of the paper-making machine. Drying the paper is just one aspect of the cylinder's function within the entire paper-making process. It assists in the paper-making process itself, rather than being ancillary or subordinate to that function.

Despite the significance of the drying function to the overall paper-making process, we find the Yankee dryer cylinder to be first and foremost a dryer. Based on the facts presented, it appears that what in fact makes the paper is the process by which the paper is removed from the cylinder, not any particular function of the cylinder other than drying. Stated differently, the drying function of the Yankee dryer cylinder is an essential part of the paper-making process but is not the embodiment of such. Therefore, we find the principal function of the yankee dryer cylinder to be the drying of paper or paperboard within the framework of a paper-making process.

Note 2(a) of section XVI requires that parts which are goods included in any of the headings of chapters 84 and 85 are in all cases to be classified in their respective headings. Heading 8439 provides for such articles, covering "machinery for making pulp of fibrous cellulosic material or for making or finishing paper or paperboard (other than the machinery of heading 8419); parts thereof." (emphasis added). We agree that it is irrefutable that the yankee dryer cylinder is a part of a paper- making machine, and therefore classifiable under 8439. It is crucial to note here that 8439 does not prevail over heading 8419 if an article is classifiable under both provisions, however.

You cite to Explanatory Note 84.19, which explains that the heading excludes machinery in which the heating, even if essential, is merely a secondary function designed to facilitate the main mechanical function of the machine. While we did not expressly make note of this in our earlier analysis, we did not ignore or overlook this explanation in our original ruling, either. As discussed above, we simply do not consider the drying function of the yankee cylinder to be its secondary function, but rather its primary function within the paper-making process.

Heading 8419 covers machinery for the treatment of materials by a process involving a change of temperature, such as drying. Being a parts provision, 8439 must give way to 8419, which describes the yankee dryer cylinder with more specificity, according to its function. Note 2(a) is intended to cover precisely this type of scenario. Additional support for this position is found under the Explanatory Notes for heading 8439. The Explanatory Notes (EN), although not dispositive, should be looked to for the proper interpretation of the HTSUSA. See 54 Fed. Reg. 35127, 35128 (August 23, 1989). EN 84.39(a) explains that this heading excludes, among other things, steam heated cylinder and other drying machines of heading 8419. EN 84.19 (III)(D), explains that among the articles included in this heading are rotary dryers. Rotary dryers are described as revolving cylinders or drums which may be heated internally or externally and are used in various industries, such as paper- making. We also refer back to heading 8439, which limits the type of articles covered under its provision by including only machines "other than [those] of heading 8419." The yankee dryer cylinder is a revolving cylinder which is heated internally by an injection of steam and is used in a paper-making process. Thus, because of the exclusive language of note 2(a), heading 8439, and EN 84.39(a), and the inclusive language of EN 84.19 (III)(D), we must find the yankee dryer cylinder to be properly classifiable under heading 8419 as machinery for the treatment of materials by the process of drying.


The Yankee dryer cylinder is classified under subheading 8419.32.50, HTSUSA, as a dryer for paper and paperboard.


John Durant, Director

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