Mr. Marvin Brashem, President
M. Brashem, Inc.
14023 NE 8th Street
Bellevue, Washington 98007

RE: The tariff classification for wax treated graphite rods from China.

Dear Mr. Brashem:

In your letter dated January 28, 2009 you requested a tariff classification ruling for wax treated graphite rods used in cathodic protection systems. You provided digital photographs, a certificate of wax treatment and label indicating wax treated for our review.

The wax treated specialty rods consist of graphite rods in two sizes: 3 inches in diameter by 60 inches in length and 4 inches in diameter by 80 inches in length. The rods are used in cathodic protection systems for pipelines, underground storage systems, underground distribution systems, refineries, offshore platforms, etc. The wax seals the graphite rods from moisture which reduces the life of the graphite rods.

Cathodic protection is basically the prevention of electrolytic corrosion of a metallic structure by causing it to act as a cathode (negative electrode) rather than as an anode (positive electrode) of an electrochemical cell. Graphite rods are placed in contact with the metal to be protected. Because the graphite is more electrically active, the corrosive current will exit from the graphite rather than the metal. Thus the metal (cathode) is protected while the attached graphite (anode) is slowly dissolved and replaced over time.

The applicable subheading for the wax treated graphite rods will be subheading 8545.19.2000, HTSUS, which provides for: Carbon electrodes, carbon brushes, lamp carbons, battery carbons and other articles of graphite or other carbon, with or without metal, of a kind used for electrical purposes: Electrodes: Other: Of a kind used for electrolytic purposes. Articles of this heading may be coated electrolytically or by spraying to increase their conductivity and decrease their rate of wear. The rate of duty will be free.

Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at

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 Frank Cantone at (646) 733-3038.


Robert B. Swierupski
National Commodity Specialist Division