Heave to: any pointers experienced folks use?

I am curious how experienced sailors use this technique on the BCC 28. (For riding out really bad weather).

What sail configurations and Tiller position and or angle to the wind/waves works best on average?

I laid hove-to under a triple reefed main in force 9 conditions about 150 miles northwest of Bermuda. Very heavy seas as you might imagine. As I recall, the tiller was secured almost fully to leeward and the mainsheet was eased moderately. The boat performed superbly over a 36 hour period, drifting only 1-1.5 kts. Took a few crests over the top, but no damage. I had a storm trysail ready to go on a separate track, but given the performance of the reefed main, decided not to swap them. I would do this again and I’m not sure I would go to the trouble of carrying a separate trysail assuming the main is in good condition and is of offshore design.

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So, triple reefed main and no other sails forward?


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I have hove to with a backed staysl and an eased triple reefed main with good results in heavy weather and heavy seas off of Cape Hatteras on a friend’s boat that is a sister boat to Sareffyn. I do not think we would have weathered the storm any other way, knocked down twice in the night, came right back up.

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