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NY A88379

October 23, 1996

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:106 A88379


TARIFF NO.: 8424.89.9080

Mr. Tony Borowiecki
Mohawk Customs & Shipping Corp.
P.O. Box 3065
Syracuse, NY 13220-3065

RE: The tariff classification of spray etching machinery from Germany

Dear Mr. Borowiecki:

In your letter dated October 7, 1996, on behalf of Buckbee Mears Co., you requested a tariff classification ruling. You included descriptive literature with your request.

The spray etching machinery in question is part of a line which manufactures so-called aperture masks. These "masks", in their finished condition, resemble a fine mesh window screen and is first used as a pattern for applying the red, blue and green phosphor stripes to the inside face of a television picture tube. In the finished tube, the mask becomes the gating device which directs the correct electron beam to the appropriate phosphor stripe. Aperture masks range in size from 6 to 42 inches and are manufactured from steel or nickel alloys in various thicknesses. The in-line manufacturing process includes the following: 1) cleaning of the steel web or very thin coil of cold-rolled steel; 2) coating the surface with a light sensitive material (photoresist); 3) printing a mask image on the steel band; 4) developing the pattern; 5) chemical eteching of the dots or slots; 6) removing of remaining coating material; 7) cleaning; 8) stripping and 9) inspection. The finished aperture mask contains 500,000 or more very small, precisely shaped dots or slots. The spray etching machinery, the subject of your inquiry and step 5 in the above manufacturing process, uses a ferric chloride etching process. The ferric chloride is sprayed onto the steel web within the etcher chambers through a series of spray nozzles. The solution is pumped to the spray nozzles through a network of titanium pipes. Included in the etcher chamber is a series of oscillating motors that rotate the spray headers from side to side to coat the steel evenly. The etecher machinery includes up to 9 chambers, each approximately 21 feet in length and 6 feet high.

The applicable subheading for the spray etching machinery will be 8424.89.9080, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other mechanical appliances for projecting, dispersing or spraying of liquids or powders. The rate of duty will be 2.9 percent ad valorem.

You also asked for the tariff classification of the printer section of the aperture mask manufacturing line. This part of your inquiry is not in conformity with the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177) and a ruling will not be issued at this time. Additional information is required as follows:

1. What is the infrared source?

2. What does the infrared source consist of and how does it operate?

3. Does the printer contain any lenses, mirrors, prisms, light filters or other optical elements?

4. What is the wavelength range of the infrared source?

When this information is available, you may wish to consider resubmission of your request.

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 Patrick J. Wholey at 212-466-5668.


Roger J. Silvestri

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