Thank you for your clarification in Q and A entry 1235! To summarize, billets and sheets of material are classified as raw materials and considered legal, because even though they undergo some of the fabrication techniques listed in VUR3, they also undergo some of the finishing processes listed in VUR4. We would like to ask a follow up question, but first, here are rules VUR3 and VUR4 again.
Fabricated Parts may be made using the following processes: a. Adding material, such as 3D printing. b. Removing material, such as cutting, drilling, or machining. c. Bending material, such as sheet metal breaking or thermoforming. d. Casting or molding material, such as injection molding or sand casting. e. Attaching materials to one another, such as welding or chemically bonding (e.g., epoxy).
Fabricated Parts must be made from raw materials. For the purpose of this rule, a “raw material” is any material that would not be considered a “pre-fabricated” part (i.e., has not undergone any of the fabrication techniques listed in VUR3). a. Standard raw material finishing processes, such as extrusion, heat treating, or anodizing, are not considered pre-fabrication.
Our question is whether other parts that have undergone the listed finishing processes are also considered raw materials. For example, most COTS gears are cast, hobbed, or broached, all of which would be considered prefabrication techniques under VUR3. However, COTS gears are then heat treated and / or anodized, which are both considerd raw material finishing processes in VUR4. Are COTS gears therefore raw materials?
If not, what is the distinction between aluminum billets and (for instance) COTS cast aluminum gears? Both parts are cast and then heat treated.
Thank you for your time!