Introduction: Restoring Vintage Bicycle

About: I'm a simple guy from a simple country called Latvia. I enjoy making useful (and sometimes not so useful) stuff to make people around me happier!


4 years ago I bought a vintage Peugeot bicycle (it was made in 1975), I wasn't satisfied with its color, so I took it all off and painted the frame with black spray paint. So for 4 years I was riding my black bike, when one day came, when I thought to myself:"God, how awful my bike looks!", so I decided to completely restore my bicycle!

Unfortunately I was so busy with the work that I forgot to take pictures of the painting process, so this instructable is mostly about how I covered saddle and handle bar with leather!

Tools needed:

  • Many different wrenches
  • Sandpaper (both very low and very high grip)
  • Pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • Needle
  • Fan
  • Pegs


  • Spray paint
  • Primer
  • Leather
  • Glue
  • Duct tape
  • Varnish
  • Thread

Step 1: Taking Apart

I started with taking the bike apart, it was all easy until I got to bottom bracket, that was when all the problems started. First of all, it took me half an hour to take off both of the crank arms, they were holding really tight. It is important not to use metal hammers to take them off, in my case crank arms are made out of aluminum, and on impact from metal it breaks, so I used a piece of wood to hit them off!

When I took out the bottom bracket I wasn't able to take off that part that held the bracket in the frame. After an hour of hard work and many failures I finally did it, the bike was in pieces!

Step 2: Saddle

  • First I soaked the leather in hot water for 15 minutes, then I started stretching the leather around the saddle.
  • I didn't have clamps, so I used needle and thread, I started sewing it together as tight as possible
  • Then I dried it using a fan and cut off the excess leather
  • After a day, when the leather was dry, I put some glue on the saddle and stretched the leather around it
  • Again I cut off the unnecessary leather, and, using pegs, I glued the strips of leather to the saddle.

Step 3: Handle Bar

For this you'll need long strips of leather.

Again, I soaked them in hot water for 15 minutes, and started to stretch the strips around the handle bar.

The leather that I used was quite thick, so I had to flatten it using wooden hammer.

After a day when the leather was dry, I glued the leather strips to the handle bar.

Step 4: Mistakes

When painting, I couldn't decide what to do. I wanted to color the connection parts both black and white. First I painted them black, but only then understood that white would be more suitable, because the green color was dark enough by itself!

I was too lazy to duct tape all of the connection parts again, so I simply painted them all green, and only a few parts I painted white. At the end the result was more than satisfying!

Also I tried the primer on the fork, but the primer wasn't compatible with the color, and the coat shattered, so I had to take it all off. After that I decided to leave it metallic!

Step 5: Result

From distance the bicycle looks nice :D but when looking closer there are some parts that don't satisfy me, however all in all, the bicycle looks awesome!

The paint cost me about 25 euros, all of the leather cost me about 6 euros!

It definitely was worth it, and for such a small price anyone could do it!

Check out my Etsy shop: Here

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