TC of NC,
I think there is a lot of flim-flam in the entire RV business... just to separate consumers from their hard-earned money. Hitches are certainly no exception.
At the risk of calling somebody's 'baby' ugly, all proper weight distribution hitches work the same to distribute weight
, no matter what you spend.
This is true because most are designed on the same principle. They all require you to adjust spring-bars (or spring 'rubber') to spring-load the truck rear upwards to counteract trailer weight on the ball. They are really weight re-adjustment hitches rather than sway preventers. Some binding
(more-or-less) may inadvertently reduce sway somewhat. In your case, your heavy duty truck is probably suitable to largely control sway all by itself, if you don't need to lighten your rear axle weight otherwise.
If you do need rear weight reduction and it were up to me, I would buy an 'EAZ LIFT 48058 1,000 lbs Elite'
($287) which I've bought twice in the past. For the money, it has a 1000 lb hitch weight recommendation with a total 10k trailer rate and works exactly as stated. It uses a separate replaceable
'brake-shoe' to damp sway with friction (if it is a problem), unlike some rather over-priced units which use dry assembly friction that not only squeaks, but wears main metal-to-metal parts (like the bars themselves). However the simple EAZ Lift uses chains for swing-flexibility which might be what you are trying to avoid. Is there any specific reason you do not like chains?
For something alternate, and if I were willing to spend more money, I would seriously consider the Andersen
hitch ($550), just like some posters recommended, because of no bar
grease mess and remarkable ease of camp storage. The ball will still be messy. The long, heavy and greasy spring bars of all other types are a nuisance to store once you arrive at the campsite. The Andersen looks way more compact than any other.
Some Andersen sway damping is taken care of by the tension rubber because rubber has a natural internal friction and some additional friction is per ball-pin/bushing twisting. It does appear, however, that tension must always be tediously adjusted(?) by a fair amount of 'nut-turning' each
time it is installed (needs a deep socket and lithium drill, I suppose). There are other unique complaints on Amazon.
Previously, I mentioned most are designed the same way, springs and using friction for damping. Some exceptions to friction are the Hensley
, the Pro-Pride 3P
and the PullRite
TT hitches. The first two, a design by Jim Hensley, use a brilliant, simple, but hard to fathom, geometry projection linkage to force the TT to stay in line with the rear truck axle. The PullRite uses direct geometry. All of these are designed to eliminate sway altogether.
With these premium hitches, any side-wind at most actually moves the whole rig sideways like a rigid motorhome rather than bending it at the hitch-point. While the first two Hensley designs use a trapezoid linkage to project a 'new virtual ball-point', the PullRite actually remounts the actual TT hitch pivot point very near the center of the rear truck axle. They are not cheap.
They all work on a principle that prevents the long rear truck overhang leverage from allowing the TT to sway the rear of the truck. They do this by giving the truck more geometric leverage, primarily by putting the 'ball-point' between the tires rather than out on the end of the frame. Most remarkably, these hitches achieve anti-sway essentially equal or superior to a 5th wheel with the 5vr pin also centered right on the rear axle centerline. None of these last three 'geometry hitches' rely on friction to eliminate sway; they rely only on correctly projected, or directly correct geometry.
I first used a Hensley/Pro-Pride custom hybrid assembly with our first TT (29'+). I used it because I got a reasonable deal on it and I had an exceptionally small truck, a Mazda (like a Ford Ranger), and because I only moved it a few miles at slow speeds the first year, as planned. Then some friends wanted to go 100+ miles the next year. This little truck only weighed in at about 4k pounds wet and sway was a real concern at higher speeds. I first thought I could just travel back roads at slower speeds, but it was sometimes impossible to avoid the interstate which at least required a V8 engine for hills (no V6 Eco-Boost back then). Very shortly, I used a 3/4 ton Ford Excursion with a V10, about 7k pounds.
After the truck upgrade, the Hensley became a nuisance to connect sometimes (no ball, you have to precisely slide a square bar into a square hole) so I went back to the EAZ Lift which was much simpler to connect... just drop the ball on. I sold the first EAZ Lift with the first TT so bought a new one for the second TT. Because of the greater weight of the Excursion truck, I didn't use sway brake attachment, but still, it rode better with the WD bars. The second EAZ Lift eventually went with the second TT. I still have the Hensley/ProPride hybrid.