The new-for-2020 Edco Maloja is an excellent deep-section, ‘everyday, all weather’ wheelset. It’s also very competitively priced for such a good quality pair of carbon hoops, and the braking performance is up there with the best I’ve used.
The last set of wheels I tested from Edco was the big ticket Brocon, a full carbon fibre wheelset (including hubs and spokes) designed for disc brakes that cost a cool £2,900!
The Malojas sit at the other end of the market at £749.99 (currently £649.99) but still exude the same levels of quality, both in terms of build and ride.
At 50mm deep they provide some aerodynamic advantage and certainly feel lively above 23mph, where the gains are more noticeable. On the flat they roll along very smoothly, and they also give a plush-feeling ride so if you are out for a long one you aren’t getting battered by an overly harsh carbon layup.
The 24-spoke rear and 20-spoke front build provides plenty of lateral stiffness paired with the 19mm internal width rim. The front is laced radially and the rear two-cross on the drive side and radially on the non-drive side. The spokes are from Sapim, aero-bladed with a j-bend at the hub.
Hard efforts when sprinting or climbing achieved no rubbing noises from any rim/brake pad contact, and as they only weigh around 1,600g (2,270g with tape, tube and tyres) they feel sprightly when you ask them to start spinning quicker.
Freehub engagement is pretty much instantaneous, something that you can feel when trackstanding at the lights, so when you want to power off the Malojas just go.
One place where carbon fibre rims can be a bit of a letdown, especially in the wet, is braking performance. The last few years have seen big improvements, though, with manufacturers adding various materials into the carbon resin mix to give a bit more of a modulated feel to slowing down, like you get on an alloy rim.
Edco’s carbon blend is spot on and these are some of the best braking wheels I’ve ridden in both the wet and dry. In the wet you still need that wheel revolution to clear the water off like any rim, but once that’s done the pads grip well and bring you to a stop quickly without feeling at all grabby.
In the dry, the control you have over the braking is brilliant and gives total confidence should you need to come to a halt sharpish.
The rims are tubeless ready, and the width gives the 25mm tyres that ours came fitted with a nice rounded shape. It does increase the nominal tyre width by about a couple of millimetres, so you might need to bear that in mind if frame or brake caliper clearance is tight.
Another thing I was impressed with was how little the rims are affected by crosswinds. I was riding these back in the winter through the stormy season, and while I could feel a little slap from a gust past a gateway, on the whole the u-shaped profile doesn’t get twitchy at all regardless of the angle of the wind.
As I said, ours came fitted with tyres, a pair of Vittoria Corsa Graphene 2.0s, and these were easy to get on and off. Trying others I’ve got knocking around from the likes of Schwalbe and Panaracer also went on fine, and some tubeless tyres popped onto the bead without issue.
The alloy-bodied hubs ran smoothly throughout the wet and dirty test period and showed no signs of noise or grumbling, which is impressive considering the amount of floodwater on the roads at the time.
Our test models came with a Shimano/SRAM freehub but they are available with a Campagnolo freehub too.
Overall, the Edco Maloja is a great set of wheels at sensible money, whether you are looking for your first set of carbon hoops or fancy a quality upgrade for your race bike.
Excellent carbon wheelset that performs across the board at a good price.