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NY A84016

June 12, 1996

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:103 A84016


TARIFF NO.: 8479.89.9598; 8479.90.9590

Ms. Wendy Stendal
All Freight International, Inc.
PO Box 68663
Seattle, WA 98168

RE: The tariff classification of automatic lubricators and activating screws from Germany

Dear Ms. Stendal:

In your letter dated May 21, 1996 on behalf of HTL Perma USA you requested a tariff classification ruling.

Perma automatic lubricators continuously discharge a lubricant at a constant rate without pumps, motors, or electric power. They are intended to be mounted on bearings, bushings, and other wear components, and can be attached to rotating, moving, or vibrating elements in various machines. The injector basically consists of a cylinder-shaped housing incorporating a lubricant chamber, a piston, and a bladder containing a liquid electrolyte. To activate the unit, an plastic screw which holds a metal pellet within its threaded shank is manually tightened into the lubricator unit. This causes the metal pellet to drop into the electrolytic solution, where a chemical reaction occurs and generates a gas. The gas expands the rubber bladder against the piston, thus continuously forcing the lubricant from its chamber. At the end of the lubrication period, which can vary from 1 - 12 months depending on the type of activating screw, a discharge indicator cap becomes visible, indicating all lubricant has been discharged. The lubricator is then removed and a new one installed.

Perma lubricators are available in three versions: the Perma Classic and Perma Futura, which utilize citric acid as the electrolyte, and the Perma Frost, which utilizes acetic acid. All of these units will be imported without any lubricant, and are not refillable.

In your letter you suggest classifying Perma lubricators in heading 8413, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for pumps for liquids, whether or not fitted with a measuring device. However, the function of a pump is to continuously move liquid from one location to another. Implicit in this definition is that the unit have a separate intake and discharge. The instant item is more akin to a syringe than to a pump. Thus these lubricators cannot be classified as pumps in heading 8413, HTS. In the absence of a more specific provision, the applicable subheading for the Perma lubricators will be 8479.89.9598, HTS, which provides for machines and mechanical appliances having individual functions, not specified or included elsewhere...: other machines and mechanical appliances: other: other: other: other. The rate of duty will be 3.2 percent ad valorem.

You also inquired about the classification of the activating screws. As these screws incorporate the gas generating pellet, they are considered to be a part of the lubricator. When imported separately, the applicable subheading for the activating screws will be 8479.90.9590, HTS, which provides for parts of machines and mechanical appliances having individual functions, not specified or included elsewhere...: other: other. The rate of duty will be 2.2 percent ad valorem.

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

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Alan Horowitz at 212-466-5494.


Roger J. Silvestri

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