Last week I finished riding home from work and noticed a bit of play in my pedal and crank. When I took a closer look the pedal was not straight in the crank. After a bit of work, I was able to get the pedal off to take a look. At a first glance it looked like the pedal was cross threaded. When I took it off lots of metal flakes came off the crank.
I did a quick search for a crank online and did not see much for my 16 year old bike. There was a few options for purchases but all were quite expensive. I borrowed a crank puller from a friend at work and headed to my local bike shop (www.freewheelerbikeshop.com/). The crew over there was able to find me a used crank, left arm. It was a cheap and easy fix.
After some discussion it sounds like the crank was over-tightened and over time caused it to strip out. When you commute frequently things tend to break. It may be time to get a new ride. Any suggestions.