Appeal from order of Superior Court, April T., 1967, No. 79, reversing judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Westmoreland County, July T., 1964, No. 347, in case of George Bloom v. Charles D. Hilty and Cardwell Gas Drilling Company.
Daniel J. Snyder, with him Avra N. Pershing, Jr., and Smith, Best, Williams, Costello & Snyder, for appellant.
Christ. C. Walthour, Jr., with him Kunkle, Walthour & Garland, for appellee.
Bell, C. J., Jones, Cohen, Eagen, O'Brien and Roberts, JJ. Opinion by Mr. Justice O'Brien. Mr. Justice Musmanno took no part in the consideration or decision of this case.
This case arises out of a replevin action seeking recovery of § 7500 worth of gas drilling pipe and assorted connections. Plaintiff-appellant Bloom won a verdict in the trial court, but the Superior Court reversed. We granted allocatur.
In 1962 and 1963 Charles D. Hilty procured a quantity of pipe from George Bloom, the full purchase price not having been paid. It was orally agreed that title was to remain in Bloom until the full purchase price was paid.
On April 12, 1963, the defendant, Cardwell Gas Drilling Company [Cardwell] sold Charles D. Hilty a drilling rig and received a chattel mortgage which attempted to encumber not only the drilling rig but the pipe procured from Bloom. Cardwell's salesman was notified at the time by Hilty that he, Hilty, was not the owner of the pipe. A financing statement covering the agreement of April 12, 1963 was filed with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania on April 16, 1963. Bloom had not filed a financing statement at that time, nor has he subsequently filed such a statement.
On May 12, 1964, Bloom entered into a written lease-purchase agreement with Hilty, providing for a monthly rental of $500 payable June 1, 1964, and each month thereafter for four years, with the provision that title vest in Hilty upon payment in full. Hilty defaulted in his payments from the date the first $500 was due, and a default judgment was entered against him.
On June 3, 1964, the Sheriff made a levy pursuant to a judgment of an E. A. Bowman against Hilty. The bill of sale shows that the levy was on the "drilling
equipment (complete) and an autocar and all other personal property of the defendant". Cardwell, on June 16, 1964, bought in the equipment on a bid of $1 and claimed the $7500 worth of pipe as well. There is testimony that the sheriff and Cardwell, through his agents, were again told that the pipe was not Hilty's.
Cardwell claims title to the pipe through its perfected security interest superior to Bloom's claim of ownership, and ...