Restore an old or antique tricycle. This is a fun project, but must be done out of love for an old personal toy or antique rather than turning a profit. Follow the tips below for successfully restoring a tricycle.
Rub the tricycle down with paint thinner to remove any unoriginal layers of paint. The original paint job should be visible after this.
Clean built up grease from bearings. Pour the paint thinner over top and letting it soak in for 15 minutes.
Scrub the parts that have built up grease residue with a paintbrush. This should remove most of it.
Spray the tricycle down with a hose. The pressure of the water removes the most stubborn grease build ups. Dry the tricycle well to prevent it from rusting.
Evaluate how much rust the tricycle has. For light rust, special paints can be purchased that cover rust. Rustoleum brand is good and can be purchased as a primer or as a pint to paint right over the rusty areas. Heavily rusted areas will need to be sanded and then painted with a layer of primer.
Repaint the faded tricycle its original color. If the tricycle is not too old, it may just need retouching in a few places, but the paint must match exactly. Once the paint job is done, wax the tricycle to make it shiny.
Locate replacement parts if needed. Try the Classic and Antique Bicycle Exchange.