What I do is follow all the steps for regular pulling - except the last one where you rip the hair out. Instead, I use a pair of scissors and cut. Never super short, and obviously no longer than I want the end result to be (honestly, I try to stay within about an inch of the desired length). I trim relatively small chunks and cut at an angle.
Swear to Jebus it turns out essentially the same, and this is coming from someone that braids professionally. If you run across sections that are unevenly thick, you can pull out a few chunks here and there, but honestly? I'll take a too-thick mane over a too-thin one, anyday (to braid).
My boy has a perfect mane: not too thick, not too thin.
I don't have any problems with him, but my mother and I worked as grooms for a few trainers, one of whom primarily did sporthorse-type Morgans, and this method is pretty damn close to what my mom used on them Looked nice, and no tantrums over pulling.
I have a mare who is a doll on the ground and the only thing she HATES is pulling. I have discovered the best thing EVER for thinning manes and controlling their length. I think someone may have mentioned it already, about the dog matts, but not sure if we are talking about the same tool.
The tool i use (with a link below) is a "dog" tool. I had a Shire with a mane like no other so thick it was ridiculous. I would brush the mane and then brush this tool through it to thin it out, putting the tool at an angle would allow me to adjust the length of the mane without pulling it out of the neck.
My mare went from throwing me against a wall to a rare head shake while doing this.
Good ideas. thanks! I think I will steer clear of Nair, and just for the whole growing in thing.
So, what I will do first is do a trial braiding session with her and see what I really have to deal with and go from there.
Piedmont, your post made me laugh! What kind of horse is she?
She's an Oldenburg (GOV). But, her grand-dam (on her dam's side) was an Andalusian approved with Oldenburg (GOV)... I think that's where she gets her thick locks from! Her tail is super thick too (but that, I love!)
Expensive but awesome. Basically a curved comb with sharp edges. I 'borrowed' the one we had for our schnauzer and used it on the pony. Basically what it does is cut/pull hair - you use it on dogs to get a clipper like effect but to NOT soften the wiry coat a terrier is supposed to have.
I used it on the horse as a really easy type of mane thinner. You just run it through small sections of mane until you have it at the thickness you want, then move on. The closer together the blades the more hair you lose in one pass - we have the 20. I would say that 5 minutes of work had the mane down to thin, flat and pretty... and the horse did not care *at all*.