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HQ 960228

MARCH 17, 1998

CLA-2 RR:CR:GC 960228 JAS


TARIFF NO.: 8205.40.00

Mr. Jim Reynolds
John A. Steer Co.
28 S. 2nd. St.
Philadelphia, PA 19106

RE: NY 880021 Modified; Eyeglass Repair Kit, Combined Hand Magnifier, Screwdriver, Steel Screws, and Key Chain; Goods Put Up in Sets for Retail Sale, Essential Character, GRI 3(b); NY A86533

Dear Mr. Reynolds:

In NY 880021, issued to you on November 19, 1992, on behalf of L. Lawrence Products, Inc., the Area Director of Customs, New York, in part held that the Deluxe Repair Kit, style 170, was not a set for tariff classification purposes, and that the components were separately classifiable under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). We have reconsidered this ruling and now believe that style 170 is a set for tariff purposes.

Pursuant to section 625(c)(1), Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1625(c)(1)), as amended by section 623 of Title VI (Customs Modernization) of the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, Pub. L. 103-182, 107 Stat. 2057, 2186 (1993), notice of the proposed modification of NY 880021 was published on February 11, 1998, in the Customs Bulletin, Volume 32, Number 6. No comments were received in response to this notice.


The Deluxe Repair Kit, style 170, is 3 3/4 inches long, of plastic. It consists of a hand magnifier, the handle of which is open on the end and hollow, and contains six (6) metal eyeglass repair screws. A screwdriver with metal key chain on one end is press fitted into the open end of the magnifier. In a letter, dated December 12, 1997, the importer submitted a sample,
together with a brochure, and stated that the article is imported assembled but unpackaged. In most instances, the kits are blister packaged after importation for retail sale.

The provisions under consideration are as follows:

7318 Screws...and similar articles, of iron or steel:

7318.50 Other screws and bolts:


7318.15.60 Having shanks or threads with a diameter of less than 6 mm...6.2 percent ad valorem

8205 Handtools...not elsewhere specified or included:

8205.40.00 Screwdrivers, and parts thereof...6.2 percent ad valorem

9013 [o]ther optical appliances and instruments, not specified or included elsewhere in [chapter 90]...:

9013.80 Other devices, appliances and instruments:

9013.80.20 Hand magnifiers...6.6 percent ad valorem


Whether the Deluxe Repair Kit, style 170, is a Good Put Up in Sets for Retail Sale.


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. GRI 3(b) states, in part, that goods put up in sets for retail sale ("sets") shall be classified as if consisting of the component which gives them their essential character.

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (ENs) constitute the official interpretation of the Harmonized System. While not legally binding, and therefore not dispositive, the ENs provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the Harmonized System and are thus useful in ascertaining the classification of merchandise under the System. Customs believes the ENs should always be consulted. See T.D. 89-80, 54 Fed. Reg. 35127, 35128 (Aug. 23, 1989).

To qualify as a set for tariff purposes, relevant ENs for GRI 3(b), at p. 5, list three requirements: (1) there must be at least two articles which are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings; (2) the components must be put up together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity; and, (3) the components must be put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repacking (e.g., in boxes or cases or on boards).

NY 880021 held in part that the Deluxe Repair Kit, style 170, was not a set for tariff purposes because the hand magnifier did not contribute to the specific activity of eyeglass repair. The components in style 170 were held to be separately classifiable. We are now of the opinion that this repair kit is, in fact, a set for tariff purposes. The individual components of the kit are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings of the HTSUS, as indicated above. Along with the screwdriver and screws, the hand magnifier contributes to the specific activity of eyeglass repair by increasing visual acuity for the purpose of inserting the tiny repair screws into the temple bars of the glasses. The key chain merely enhances the portable nature of the repair kit. The fact that in most instances the repair kit is blister packaged for retail sale after importation is not relevant in this case because, as imported, the good is assembled and, thus, put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users
without repacking. Because the screwdriver is the tool by which the actual repair is completed, we conclude that it imparts the essential character to the good. NY A86533, dated September 11, 1996, classified a nearly identical eyeglass repair kit similarly.


Under the authority of GRI 3(b), the Deluxe Repair Kit, style 170, is provided for in heading 8205. It is classifiable in subheading 8205.40.00, HTSUS. NY 880021, dated November 19, 1992, hereby modified with respect to style 170.

In accordance with 19 U.S.C. 1625(c)(1), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the Customs Bulletin. Publication of rulings or decisions pursuant to 19 U.S.C. 1625(c)(1) does not constitute a change of practice or position in accordance with section 177.10(c)(1), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177.10(c)(1)).


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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