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View Full Version : Horse owners (Jim?) help me find the liniment of my youth...



Eric Larsen
09-23-2009, 1:27 AM
When I was a kid, my grandparents kept a tub of stuff that looked like white Vaseline in a blue jar. The jar had a 50-year old piece of masking tape attached with "Horse Liniment" handwritten on it. I seriously doubt the liniment originally came in a blue jar. It was likely transferred decades before I was born.

That stuff was like applying napalm to my skin, but if I sprained a muscle, it [censored] worked. Quick. Fast. In a hurry. The muscle pain was gone before the pain on my skin. That really didn't matter. Once the skin pain was gone, ALL the pain was gone. It was worth the hurt.

I don't think an extended family of 20 used more than a few ounces of the stuff in a decade.

Fast forward to today. I've got some righteously sore muscles from kicking out the last few projects in my house. I mentioned to LOML today, "I'd pay $1,000 for an ounce of the horse liniment I had as a kid."

She said, "Ask your woodworking friends. Someone knows what it is and where to find it."

I wish I had a name for it. But it freakin' worked. Absorbine Jr. doesn't cut it. Icy Hot doesn't cut it. Ben Gay doesn't cut it. Anyone know what I might have been using? The only way I'd know would be to rub 1/10 of a gram on my skin. Then I'd know it in a second. Some things you don't forget.

Mike Wilkins
09-23-2009, 9:19 AM
If there is a Tractor Supply Store nearby you can find it there. Or maybe a farm supply store.

JohnT Fitzgerald
09-23-2009, 9:23 AM
What about that "Tiger balm" stuff?

David G Baker
09-23-2009, 10:04 AM
Wasn't Tiger Balm for keeping hair in place, like Vaseline with perfume mixed in. :D
There is a product made from hot peppers called Capsaicin that may do the trick if you can't find the horse liniment.
When I was a kid we bought an 80 acre farm that had two barns on it. On one of the horizontal beams there was a bottle of dark brown liquid that had a label on it that said "horse liniment". Having a very curious mind my brother and I had to check it out. That was the hottest thing outside of fire that I have ever had on my skin. I knew my skin was going to begin blistering and start falling off. Don't know what happened to the bottle, I never saw it again and never wanted to.
The next hottest thing was the mustard that my Mother would rub on my chest when I had a bad cold and congestion.
Mike is right about finding horse liniment at Tractor Supply and while you are there pick up some Monkey Butt, it is on sale. It will make your long drives so much more comfortable.

Eric Larsen
09-23-2009, 10:04 AM
What about that "Tiger balm" stuff?

Tiger Balm doesn't have 1/100th the strength of the stuff I'm looking for. Nothing sold over the counter to humans is painful to apply. This stuff was -- and it was worth it.

I imagine the recipe was something like -- chop and liquify 10,000 habanero peppers, mix with the oil of 5,000 eucalyptus leaves, distill into a few ounces of "liquid pain," mix with petroleum jelly.

Prashun Patel
09-23-2009, 10:10 AM
Search this.

Absorbineģ Veterinary Horse Liniment (http://www.doversaddlery.com/absorbine-veterinary-horse-liniment-/p/X1-22402/)


There is an all-natural horse liniment, but I doubt it's the stuff of your youth.

Stephen Tashiro
09-23-2009, 11:18 AM
Much of the stuff that worked well when we were kids did so because we were kids.

John Pratt
09-23-2009, 1:17 PM
Much of the stuff that worked well when we were kids did so because we were kids.

...And much of the stuff we used as Kids is no longer available because it has been deemed "dangerous". Although not as "seasoned" as some on this forum, I grew up on a farm and was very active in sports to include rodeo. Lots, and lots, and lots or aches and pains. We also used Horse liniment but then can a better product called DMSO. It burned like horse liniment but worked twice as fast. Apparently people started using it as a vehicle to get drugs into their system so it was banned in the U.S. Still available in Europe though.

I would look in the yellow pages for the nearest large animal vet. Although they may be hesitant to give it out. There is now a push to have all Vet supplies regulated like the pharmacy because people are misusing vet supplies as well, like Ketamine.

Cliff Rohrabacher
09-23-2009, 1:26 PM
What about that "Tiger balm" stuff?

About 30 years ago a feller in the Sheet metal shop who was all enamored of his Tai Kwan Do tried to turn me on to that stuff.
It's a Korean version of Vicks Vapo Rub.
It don't du nuthin but feel a little hot on the skin.

David G Baker
09-23-2009, 1:28 PM
John P,
Was DMSO the chemical that left a garlic taste in your mouth not long after ingesting it? If so, my elderly neighbors in California used it faithfully for aches and pains.
I use Bio Freeze, supplied by my chiropractor. It isn't very hot, the smell disappears pretty quick and works pretty well on my frozen shoulder.

John Pratt
09-23-2009, 1:39 PM
John P,
Was DMSO the chemical that left a garlic taste in your mouth not long after ingesting it? If so, my elderly neighbors in California used it faithfully for aches and pains.

Thatís the stuff. They made it in a oral version as a general pain killer and the balm to apply to the sore area (the balm worked best). As soon as you put it on your skin, you could taste it in your mouth. Dad used to mix in some cinnamon oil and when you put it on you could instantly taste the cinnamon instead of that garlic taste. Apparently people would mix it with LSD or other drugs and ingest the drug through the skin with the DMSO as the vehicle. That and some people would mix drugs with it and wipe it on car door handles so when you got into your car you would be getting the drug pushed into your system (hearsay). But there was a band that did a song about it in the 70ís or 80ís (Dead Kennedys or something like that). All I know is that when I fell off a horse or had back pain from bailing hay that stuff WORKED.

Mike Cutler
09-23-2009, 2:32 PM
DMSO is still available. It can be found in most tack shops, I have a jar in the barn. It comes premixed with a consistency close to hand cleaner.
I would find something else to use.;)

Belinda Williamson
09-23-2009, 3:13 PM
This might do the trick Eric.

http://www.vermontcountrystore.com/browse/Home/Apothecary/Medicine-Cabinet/Heet-Pain-Relieving-Liniment/D/30100/P/1:100:1000:10130/I/f01215?evar3=SEARCH

Alan Jones
09-23-2009, 3:21 PM
Reminds me of a story from years ago. A friend very foolishly confided in my older brother that he had aquired crabs (body lice) from a girl. My brother gave him a tube of linament and told him to apply it liberally down below, but neglected to inform what it was. The linament was Fiery Jack which used to be sold over here in England and had the same properties as the horse linament, so you can imagine the friends reaction after slapping it on :D

Eric Larsen
09-23-2009, 3:24 PM
This might do the trick Eric.

http://www.vermontcountrystore.com/browse/Home/Apothecary/Medicine-Cabinet/Heet-Pain-Relieving-Liniment/D/30100/P/1:100:1000:10130/I/f01215?evar3=SEARCH


Nope. That stuff looks entirely too safe for human use. I'm not as sore today, so now I'm basically more curious -- "what WAS that stuff I used to use?"

I'd wager that this is either still in common use by ranchers all over North America, or that it was banned decades ago, and is now considered toxic.

But if anyone knows of a white cream that burns like fire and makes sore muscle pain go away in about 10 seconds (and the burn goes away in like five minutes), I'm still all ears.

Joe Mioux
09-23-2009, 4:14 PM
I had some stuff here at work. My office manager brought it in.

Absorbine Veterinary liniment

http://www.doversaddlery.com/product.asp?pn=X1-22402&tid=froogle&CATALOG_CODE=1X814&EID=X1814001&zmam=1460880&zmas=1&zmac=49&zmap=X1-22402&bhcd2=1253736688

Cliff Rohrabacher
09-23-2009, 10:23 PM
Was DMSO the chemical that left a garlic taste in your mouth not long after ingesting it?

Isn't DMSO a Volatile Organic Solvent?

Stephen Tashiro
09-23-2009, 10:54 PM
"Wakins White Cream Liniment" is based on camphor and turpentine. Maybe plain turpentine would work.

David G Baker
09-23-2009, 11:48 PM
Cliff,
I think DMSO is a volatile organic solvent. I don't recall what its original use was but I do remember that there were warnings in the media that it may not be safe to use, probably because the FDA hadn't done any research on it.
In my searching back into my memory, my neighbors did not ingest DMSO, they rubbed it on the aches and pains but still got the garlic taste.