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HQ 953198

October 1, 1993

CLA-2 CO:R:C:M 953198 RFA


TARIFF NO.: 8501.10.40

District Director of Customs
300 S. Ferry Street
Terminal Island
Los Angeles, CA 90731

RE: Protest No. 2704-92-100779; servos for model airplanes; electric motors; heading 8529; parts; Section XVI, Note 2(a); EN 85.01; HQs 088726, 952500, 950834

Dear District Director:

The following is our decision regarding the request for further review of Protest No. 2704-92-100779, which concerns the classification of Futaba's servo mechanism under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). The entries of the subject merchandise were liquidated on January 3, 1992, and February 7, 1992. The protest was timely filed on February 25, 1992.


The subject merchandise is a servo used in model airplanes. Servos are the part of the model airplane which actuate the devices which control the speed and direction of the airplane's flight. The servos operate in the following manner: an input signal is fed to the input amplifier where it is amplified and shaped to a constant level. This signal is then fed into a comparator where it is compared with a signal generated by the free running oscillator. If the signals are not the same, the electric motor will turn. The motor is geared to a potentiometer within the oscillator. When the output pulse of the oscillator is equal to the input signal, the motor will stop.

The merchandise was entered under subheading 8479.89.90, HTSUS, as other machines and mechanical appliances having individual functions not specified elsewhere, or under subheading 8529.90.45, HTSUS, as parts of radio remote control apparatus.

The entries were liquidated under subheading 8501.10.40, HTSUS, as electric motors.

The subheadings under consideration are as follows:

8479.89.90: Machines and mechanical appliances having individual functions, not specified or included elsewhere in this chapter. . .:
[o]ther machines and mechanical appliances: [o]ther: [o]ther. . . .

Goods classifiable under this provision have a general, column one rate of duty of 3.7 percent ad valorem.

8501.10.40 Electric motors and generators. . .:[m]otors of an output not exceeding 37.5 W: [o]f under 18.65 W: [o]ther. . . .

Goods classifiable under this provision have a general, column one rate of duty of 6.6 percent ad valorem.

8529.90.45 Parts suitable for use solely or principally with the apparatus of headings 8525 to 8528: [o]ther: [o]f radar, radio navigational aid or radio remote control apparatus: [o]ther. . . .

Goods classifiable under this provision have a general, column one rate of duty of 4.9 percent ad valorem.

The protestant has subsequently withdrawn his claim of classification of the servos under heading 8479, HTSUS. Therefore, classification under that heading shall not be considered in resolving this protest.


Whether the servo motors for model airplanes are classifiable as an electric motor or as a part of radio control apparatus under the HTSUS?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUS is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes.

The protestant argues that the servos are provided for as parts of radio control apparatus under heading 8529, HTSUS. Section XVI, note 2 provides as follows:

Parts of machines (not being parts of the articles of heading No. 84.84, 85.44, 85.45, 85.46 or 85.47) are to be classified according to the following rules:

(a) Parts which are goods included in any of the headings of Chapter 84 and 85 (other than headings No. 84.85 and 85.48) 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 No. 84.79 or 85.43) are to be classified with the machines of that kind. However, parts which are equally suitable for use principally with the goods of headings No. 85.17 and 85.25 to 85.28 are to be classified in heading 85.17;

(c) All other parts are to be classified in heading No. 84.85 or 85.48.

According to Section XVI, Note 2(a), if the servos are provided for in a heading within chapters 84 or 85, they must be classified in that heading.

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (EN) constitute the Customs Cooperation Council's official interpretation of the HTSUS. While not legally binding, the ENs provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUS and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of these headings. EN 85.01(I)(A), page 1334, states that "[m]otors remain classified here even when they are equipped with pulleys, with gears or gear boxes, or with a flexible shaft for operating hand tools."

Customs has consistently held that a motor remains a motor for tariff purposes despite having other articles attached to it. These other articles can be quite substantial. See HQ 088726 (May 29, 1991) and HQ 086832 (May 21, 1990). When confronted with an assembly incorporating a motor which includes additional components other than those listed in EN 85.01, Customs will use the following guidelines set forth in HQ 950834, dated March 6, 1992:

An electric motor is classifiable under heading 8501, HTSUS, even when imported with additional components (other than those listed in Explanatory Note 85.01) if:

(1) those additional components complement the function of the motor [HQ 083955];

(2) those additional components are devices which motors are commonly equipped [HQ 087909];

(3) those additional components serve merely to transmit the power the motors produce [HQ 950557].

Attached to the servo is a potentiometer and an amplifier board, which converts the electrical signal from the receiver to an error voltage causing the motor to turn. We find that these components complement the function of the servo. Therefore, we find that servos for model airplanes are specifically provided for in heading 8501, HTSUS, as electrical motors. See also HQ 088726.

The protestant argues that the servos are "more than" a motor and should not be classified under heading 8501, HTSUS. Customs has previously determined that the "more than" principle is not applicable under the HTSUS. See HQ 083955 (July 10, 1989); HQ 950770 (February 6, 1992).

Customs does not dispute the protestant's argument that the servos are parts of remote control apparatus. However, based upon the above analysis and Section XVI, Note 2(a), we find that classification under heading 8529, HTSUS, is inapplicable.


For the foregoing reasons, we find that the servos for model airplanes are classifiable under subheading 8501.10.40, HTSUS.

Accordingly, the protest should be denied in full. A copy of this decision should be attached to Customs Form 19 and provided to the protestant as part of the notice of action on the protest.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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