I'm moving up from an 18' day boat to a 25' cruising boat.
I just like sayin that!
On my 18, the jib sheets were one long line that was tied to the jib clew at its midpoint. This was the arrangement for every boat I've ever sailed.
I haven't rigged it yet (or launched it, or much of anything) but I recall that the jib sheets on the 25 are two separate lines with a shackle at one end; this leads me to assume that they would snap onto the jib clew.
It seems to me that I wouldn't want several ounces of stainless steel at the clew of the jib. Wouldn't it whack the mast pretty often? Not every time I tack, but pretty often; wouldn't you think? I think it would start to mark up the mast.
I'm finding it difficult to imagine how a crewmember (or a skipper!) could get hit by it, but boy if they did that would really leave a mark.
I can see that this would make it easier to replace just one sheet if it were damaged; that is the only reason I can see to do it this way.
Is this the common arrangement for larger boats?