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HQ 960374

AUGUST 8, 1997

CLA-2 RR:TC:MM 960374 JAS


TARIFF NO.: 8477.80.00

Ms. Catherine F. Winfrey
Fritz Companies, Inc.
3327 N. 7th. St. Trafficway
Kansas City, KS 66115

RE: NY A89809 Affirmed; Rubber Compounding Machines; Machinery for Mixing, Kneading and Stirring Rubber With Carbon Black, Oil, and Other Raw Materials; Machinery for Working Rubber, Common Meaning, THK America, Inc. v. U.S.; Heading 8479, Machines and Mechanical Appliances, n.s.i.e.

Dear Ms. Winfrey:

In a letter, dated March 25, 1997, on behalf of Midwest Werner & Pfleiderer, Inc., you request reconsideration of a ruling issued to you on the classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), of mixing machinery manufactured in Germany. Descriptive literature was submitted.


In NY A89809, issued to you on December 12, 1996, the Director, National Commodity Specialist Division, held that the GK-N and GK-E series internal mixers were classifiable in subheading 8477.80.00, HTSUS, as other machinery for working rubber or plastics or for the manufacture of products from these materials. The ruling described the machines as being used to mix rubber, carbon black, oil, other raw materials, and chemicals into a homogeneous mass for the subsequent production of tires, hoses and gaskets, and other rubber articles. These machines consist of a feeding unit featuring a hydraulic or pneumatic ram, a uni-drive reduction gear, a mixing chamber with rotors, and a hydraulically operated discharge door. - 2 -

The provisions under consideration are as follows:

8477 Machinery for working rubber or plastics or for the manufacture of products from these materials, not specified or included elsewhere in [Chapter 84}...:

8477.80.00 Other machinery

8479 Machines and mechanical appliances having individual functions, not specified or included elsewhere in [Chapter 84]:

Other machines and mechanical appliances:

8479.82.00 Mixing, kneading, crushing, grinding, screening, sifting, homogenizing, emulsifying or stirring machines

You claim that the subheading 8477.80.00, HTSUS, classification is incorrect because the machines do not manufacture rubber products. You state that these machines are sold to manufacturers of rubber tires, hoses and gaskets, but that they merely discharge the mixed rubber compound onto a conveyor that transports the mixture to other, separate machines in the plant that perform the actual manufacturing operations. You maintain that subheading 8479.82.00, HTSUS, other machines and mechanical appliances, not specified or included elsewhere in [Chapter 84] represents the correct classification.


Whether machines that mix rubber compounds "work" rubber for purposes of heading 8477.


Merchandise is classifiable under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 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, and provided the headings or notes do not require otherwise, according to GRIs 2 through 6.

It is important to note that heading 8477 provides not only for machines that manufacture products from rubber or plastics but also for machines for working rubber or plastics. As to the provision you claim, heading 8479 is restricted to machinery having individual functions which is not excluded from Chapter 84 by any relevant legal note, and which is not covered more specifically by a heading in any other Chapter of the Nomenclature. Therefore, if the mixing machines are described by heading 8477, or any other heading in the HTSUS, they must be classified there.

Heading 8477 is a "use" provision. Additional U.S. Rule of Interpretation 1(a), HTSUS, states in relevant part that a classification controlled by use is to be determined in accordance with the use of the class or kind of goods to which the imported good belongs, and the controlling use is the principal use.

Tariff terms that are not defined in the HTSUS are to be construed in accordance with their common and commercial meanings, which are presumed to be the same, unless a demonstrated legislative intent indicates another terminology should govern. See THK America, Inc. v. United States, Slip Op. 97-61 (Ct. Int'l Trade, decided May 19, 1997), and related cases. The word "working" appearing in heading 8477 is defined neither in the text of the HTSUS nor in the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes. Therefore, we must ascertain its common meaning by consulting dictionaries and other lexicographic sources. The term "mix" is a listed synonym for the term "work." Several leading dictionaries are in accord in defining these terms:
mix "to combine or blend into one mass or mixture ...to create or form by adding ingredients together; " work "to form or shape, to mold."

In our opinion, machines that effectively mix rubber with carbon black, oil, other raw materials and chemicals, to form a homogeneous mass, can reasonably be said to work the rubber for purposes of heading 8477.


Under the authority of GRI 1, the GK-N and GK-E series internal mixers are provided for in heading 8477. They are classifiable in subheading 8477.80.00, HTSUS. NY A89809, dated December 12, 1996, is affirmed.


John Durant, Director
Tariff Classification

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