This is a fairly old thread, but I wanted to pitch
in with 2 points and 0.02c.
1- If you are wondering weather
you should reef, you should reef
2- Jibing is an emergency
maneuver. Sort of like locking the wheels on a car on order to come to a stop.
Unless the winds are very light, or I am racing
, I don't jibe. Especially on bigger boats, the amount of stress that is induced on the shackles and blocks by the sudden stop can lead to failure later on.
Some people say that you can reduce the violence of the jibe significantly by steering
your boat in a S during the jibe.