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NY 870939

February 19, 1992

CLA-2-84:S:N:N1:103 870939


TARIFF NO.: 8485.90.0000; 8413.91.2000

Mr. D. Andrew Henry
C. J. Tower Inc.
West Service Road
Champlain, NY 12919

RE: The tariff classification of mechanical seals from Finland

Dear Mr. Henry:

In your letter dated January 24, 1992 on behalf of Safematic Canada Inc. you requested a tariff classification ruling.

Literature submitted with your inquiry indicates the mechanical seals are used to prevent fluid leakage around rotating shafts. Each seal basically consists of a stainless steel housing, self-aligning stationary sealing faces made of carbide, oxide, or ceramic materials, a dynamic secondary o-ring seal, and springs incorporated in a gland ring. A flushing or recirculating port allows water to be injected into the seal to cool, clean, and lubricate it. You inquired about the following specific models of mechanical seals:

1. Safebox 877, used in stock pumps, agitators, pulpers, screw feeders, and a wide range of other applications.

2. Safebox 865, used in evaporator pumps, lime mud pumps, and condensate pumps for applications involving black and green liquors and caustic sodas.

3. Safebox 677, used in chlorine dioxide pumps, clay pumps, and recirculating pumps for applications involving hazardous/toxic chemicals.

4. Safeseal SE2, used in pumps in cooking, evaporating and causticizing operations for abrasive and effluent liquids, as well as in agitators and other process equipment.

5. Safeseal SB2, for equipment and applications similar to that of the Safeseal SE2.

Pumps, agitators, pulpers, screw feeders and other machinery, and their parts, are generally classifiable in section XVI of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS). Note 2 to section XVI states that, subject to certain exclusions found in note 1 to section XVI, note 1 to chapter 84 and note 1 to chapter 85, parts of machines are to be classified according to the following rules:

(a) Parts which are goods included in any of the headings of chapters 84 and 85 (other than headings 8485 and 8548) are in all cases to be classified in their respective headings;

(b) Other parts, if suitable for use solely or principally with a particular kind of machine, or with a number of machines of the same heading (including a machine of heading 8479 or 8543) are to be classified with the machines of that kind. However, parts which are equally suitable for use principally with the goods of headings 8517 and 8525 to 8528 are to be classified in heading 8517;

(c) All other parts are to be classified in heading 8485 or 8548.

Mechanical seals are not goods included in any of the headings of chapters 84 and 85. In view of the wide range of machines in which these mechanical seals are used, and in the absence of information establishing that they are principally used as parts of pumps or other machines of a particular kind, the applicable subheading for the mechanical seals described above will be 8485.90.0000, HTS, which provides for machinery parts, not containing electrical connectors, insulators, coils, contacts or other electrical features, and not specified or included elsewhere in this chapter: other. The rate of duty will be 5.7 percent ad valorem.

In your ruling request you also inquired as to whether these seals may be classified in the provision for parts of stock pumps imported for use with machines for making cellulosic pulp, paper or paperboard in subheading 8413.91.2000, HTS. Subheading 8413.91.2000 is an actual use provision as described in Sections 10.131-10.139 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 10.131- 10.139). Accordingly, mechanical seals actually used in stock pumps may be classified in subheading 8413.91.2000, HTS, and entered free of duty provided the requirements of Sections 10.131-10.139, Customs Regulations, are met. However, mechanical seals actually used in pumps for the handling of black and green liquors, caustic sodas, and other hazardous/toxic chemicals, as well as mechanical seals actually used in agitators, pulpers, and other machines, are not eligible for classification in subheading 8413.91.0000.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.


Jean F. Maguire
Area Director

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