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Discussion Starter #1
I'm planning on buying a trailer hitch for my 2016 GL1800 soon and I'm looking for pro and con's of the Rivco and Bushtec trailer hitches.

At this time, I'm leaning towards the Rivco. For you guys that have one would you replace it with another Rivco?
 

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I have had the Rivco hitch on my 2012 for 150,000 miles and I have found no Con's to the Rivco. The chrome on the tong is showing sign's of bubbles. I went with it because of it's lighter weight. I use it with the Rivco Rack. It has served me well. Lyl
 

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I have a RIVCO and if I were to replace it I'd get another RIVCO.

One thing that helps, or that I'd recommend, is that prior to installation you'll want to round the area shaded red in these pictures. When your filing/sanding is complete, the top edge should form a half circle rather than a box shape. See the attached silver and red image. You want to remove the area shown in red. There is a large wiring harness that must pass over this portion of the hitch when it is installed. To preserve the integrity of the wiring over time, as well as to make the installation of the hitch easier you'll want to do this.
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To me it looks like the Rivco mounts in 4 places. 4-point hitches are good for coolers racks and such. However, for towing it is best to have a 6-point hitch. The Bushtec is a 6-point hitch. Bushtec is also more into m/c pull trailering than any other company then I know of ... basically it is what they do.
 

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Never had a Rivco.....I have owned two Bushtecs one on my 2012 GL1832 and currently one on my 2018 GL1833 DCT Tour....I pull a Bushtec trailer and Love the Bushtec attention to detail, superior welds, and thick-coated paint to finish out the frame. The Bushtec hitch is chromed and never any issues with blistering, takes a beating but looks new. As Greg mentioned six anchoring points really provide a solid connection to the frame!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have a RIVCO and if I were to replace it I'd get another RIVCO.

One thing that helps, or that I'd recommend, is that prior to installation you'll want to round the area shaded red in these pictures. When your filing/sanding is complete, the top edge should form a half circle rather than a box shape. See the attached silver and red image. You want to remove the area shown in red. There is a large wiring harness that must pass over this portion of the hitch when it is installed. To preserve the integrity of the wiring over time, as well as to make the installation of the hitch easier you'll want to do this.
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That looks like a very good idea. Thanks
I take it the hitch is raw aluminum not painted or powder coated. That would make filing and sanding that much easier.
 

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I have a Bushtec on my 15 and it is well made and coated well. Seems very solid and I am quite happy with it. I am familiar with RIVCO products and have always found them to be high quality. If the hitch truly is raw aluminum that would concern me as un-coated aluminum will corrode, especially so in an environment that may encounter road salt. I would actually be surprised if it wasn't coated.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
When I look at the Rivco I see two bolts on each of the lower attachments to the frame and one bolt for attachment of the upper attachment to the frame. Would that make it 6 attachment points?

When I look at the Bushtec for the 2016 GL1800 I see one bolt at each frame attachment point and what looks like a u-bolt goes around the frame for the saddle bags. I have not seen Bushtec instruction for the 2016 GL1800 so I'm not 100% sure how it attaches to the bike.
 

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That looks like a very good idea. Thanks
I take it the hitch is raw aluminum not painted or powder coated. That would make filing and sanding that much easier.
Yes, other than the nuts and bolts it is all an aluminum alloy. It definitely looks, files and sands exactly like aluminum. But curiously, it doesn't seem to corrode at all. I live very close to the ocean and generally try and avoid chrome plated bits and pieces on my bikes for precisely this reason. Yet, whatever RIVCO is using, its surface finish seems to hold up as well as stainless steel. It's not shinny, but it doesn't seem to corrode beyond a very lite patina. You can't see the hitch when it's installed, but if you could, its appearance over time, wouldn't disappoint.
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When I look at the Rivco I see two bolts on each of the lower attachments to the frame and one bolt for attachment of the upper attachment to the frame. Would that make it 6 attachment points?

When I look at the Bushtec for the 2016 GL1800 I see one bolt at each frame attachment point and what looks like a u-bolt goes around the frame for the saddle bags. I have not seen Bushtec instruction for the 2016 GL1800 so I'm not 100% sure how it attaches to the bike.
Basically, you are seeing the 2 points per side where the Rivco attaches. The Bushtec is similar with the exceptions of those 2 u-bolts. One the forward running braces for the Bushtec, the braces are bent in a way to also attach to the rear subframe. Thus the add'l u-bolts. The add'l attaching points make it a 6-point hitch. If you are pulling a trailer, you will want a 6-point hitch.
 

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Basically, you are seeing the 2 points per side where the Rivco attaches. The Bushtec is similar with the exceptions of those 2 u-bolts. One the forward running braces for the Bushtec, the braces are bent in a way to also attach to the rear subframe. Thus the add'l u-bolts. The add'l attaching points make it a 6-point hitch. If you are pulling a trailer, you will want a 6-point hitch.
Agree.

The extra 2 points on the subframe help stop lateral movement (side to side). The actual weight of the trailer is on the four point that mount to the main frame.

I have pulled a Bunkhouse camper with both my 2004 and 2012. The Bushtec has a removable vertical draw bar, one hitch pin and it's off.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Come to think of it, I had a Bushtec on my 1500 and never had a problem with it and the two extra attachment points is a good idea. I'm going with the Bushtec.
 

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Agree.

The extra 2 points on the subframe help stop lateral movement (side to side). The actual weight of the trailer is on the four point that mount to the main frame.

I have pulled a Bunkhouse camper with both my 2004 and 2012. The Bushtec has a removable vertical draw bar, one hitch pin and it's off.
And most important, a cinch bolt !!!
 

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Unless I am mistaken, the Rivco also has a verticle draw bar, removable with one pin and a cinch bolt.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
There is no doubt that both Bushtec and Rivco are great trailer hitches but I've decided to go with the Bushtec. As some have pointed out there are 6 attachment points to the bike and as I recall, I had one on my 96 GL and never had a problem with it.
 

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There is no doubt that both Bushtec and Rivco are great trailer hitches but I've decided to go with the Bushtec. As some have pointed out there are 6 attachment points to the bike and as I recall, I had one on my 96 GL and never had a problem with it.
I had a Rivco hitch on my 2004 Wing. I did not like the fact that it went through the rear fender. Don't know if they're still like that or not. I have a vertical hitch on my 2012 which I like better.
 

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Unless I am mistaken, the Rivco also has a verticle draw bar, removable with one pin and a cinch bolt.
The one for the 2018 and up is basically a vertical hitch, though not completely vertical (angled).
The previous ones went through the rear fender into a slot on the hitch.
 

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Yes, other than the nuts and bolts it is all an aluminum alloy. It definitely looks, files and sands exactly like aluminum. But curiously, it doesn't seem to corrode at all. I live very close to the ocean and generally try and avoid chrome plated bits and pieces on my bikes for precisely this reason. Yet, whatever RIVCO is using, its surface finish seems to hold up as well as stainless steel. It's not shinny, but it doesn't seem to corrode beyond a very lite patina. You can't see the hitch when it's installed, but if you could, its appearance over time, wouldn't disappoint.
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The Bushtec adds mounting to the subframe. But this is not for strength. Both hitches handled forward/back and up/down forces equally, but the subframe mounting adds stability from rotational forces. These should be normally minimal with a two wheel trailer. The Rivco, with it's lack of stability control, is not suitable for a single wheel trailer. It would twist too much.


There are many different configurations among hitches, but Rivco is the only one that has opted to not even touch the subframe. IMO, at least that is better than hitches like the Kury and Showchrome that lack the important upper frame mounts.


The Bushtec is a tank. I would not have anything else. Also look at Hitchdoc if they still make them. It is built just like the Bushtec, but costs less I think.


A number of years ago I saw one on JC Whitney for $39 that only attached to the subframe. I wouldn't set a beer can on one of those.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
A single wheel trailer is what I'll be pulling then an occasional cooler rack from time to time. I ordered the Bushtec, wiring harness and Isolator so guess what I'll be doing this winter?
 
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