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NY F82323

March 20, 2000

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:103 F82323


TARIFF NO.: 8479.89.9797

Ms. Amy Bales
Toyota Motor Manufacturing North America, Inc. 25 Atlantic Avenue
Erlanger, KY 41018

RE: The tariff classification of an automated clamping machine from Japan

Dear Ms. Bales:

In your letters dated February 21 and March 1, 2000 you requested a tariff classification ruling.

With your inquiry you submitted photographs and a written description of a machine referred to as an M Jig Lifter. This machine will be used in the body weld area of a production line for manufacturing the Toyota Sequoia sport utility vehicle.

A sport utility vehicle shell, consisting of an assembly of the vehicle’s underbody, side members, and front and rear upper support members, is moved to the M Jig Lifter by a floor shuttle system. The M Jig Lifter itself basically consists of three individual towers and a main jig structure suspended from the ceiling. Once the underbody assembly has been locked in place, the jig structure automatically descends into the underbody assembly through the assembly’s open roof area. Several arms then extend from the Jig Lifter and clamp the underbody side member assembly at 10-15 clamping points. A series of sensors, proximity switches, and aligning pins detect specific configurations in the metal underbody assembly to locate these positions with great precision. Once the precision clamping has occurred, the machine holds the shell while separate welding robots weld outer body panels to the underbody assembly. Upon completion of the welding operations the clamp arms are released, the M Jig Lifter jig structure is raised back up to its original position above the work area, and the shuttle system transfers the vehicle shell to the next assembly station.

While the M Jig Lifter can be raised and lowered it does not actually lift an object, and thus is not lifting machinery. The applicable subheading for the M Jig Lifter will be 8479.89.9797, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for machines and mechanical appliances having individual functions, not specified or included elsewhere (in Chapter 84): other machines and mechanical appliances: other: other: other: other. The rate of duty will be 2.5 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 212-637-7027.


Robert B. Swierupski

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