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Print quality and reliability is vital to our success

Currently our printers are Original Prusa MK3S+ and Fysect MK3S+ clones.

I have worked with several brands of printers based on the Prusa i3 design and the only printer that I can recommend is the Original Prusa MK3S+. It is a well supported and the kit is educational to assemble, preparing the user for continued maintenance, updates, and repairs. The most intimidating task, the hot-end, is preassembled and the final result is a printer with amazing print quality that is very reliable.

Our Printing Story

We started selling Terrarium lids on Facebook just prior to COVID. Getting parts from Prusa during COVID didn’t look possible. In starting C&M I decided to order a second printer. It took six weeks for Prusa to ship the kit.

We developed a second product and expanded to an Etsy store. Both printers were running over 12 hours a day. Prusa was running a four week backlog on their orders so I decided to try a MK3S clone that was readily available in the US. That clone worked out well, and we have had no problem increase production to meet demand in a timely fashion.

Clone Review

A clone kit is just a box of part. Fysect has done a good job but there are little differences, like a meter of PTFE tubing that has the wrong inside diameter. The Prusa kit has a 44.2 mm with 2.0 inside diameter PTFE tube that is beveled on both ends. So it may not sound like much but the big difference, especially for a novice, is you must assemble the hot-end and that is not covered in the kit’s instructions. You MUST use a thermal paste (on the cooling side of the heat-break, not on the hot-end side). There is a 50 cm piece of 3 mm Nylon filament which is not supplied. I purchased a small roll of 3mm Nylon filament which I straighten with a heat gun and then cut off a 50cm piece. Another small difference is the heat-break. It is not all-metal, so I don’t use the one provided in the kit. We also use textured steel sheets, the one I like is the Thekkiinngg Prusa MK3 /S Double-Sided Textured Pei Powder-Coated Sheet V4.

Overall the clone kit I selected was very close to an Original and I’ve detailed the differences above. Having said that, I must stress the Original Prusa is a supported product where likely sources of failure have been identified and addressed. Their price includes access to all the products in their store and support if you are having issues in addition to good quality control. I encourage supporting Prusa by purchasing an Original, especially if you are new to 3D printing.

After putting together several MK3S clones it is clear that the quality of the parts on the clones is not as well monitored as an Original Prusa. Examples are: I had one rod that was just a little too long, one extruder stepper that I had to adjust the steps on, and one printer that doesn’t seem to print reliably from an SD card but never fails if I am using Octoprint. As a second printer, or for someone with experience, a high quality MK3S clone will probably work out fine.


Our lids are printed in PETG, which is rated food-safe and does not deteriorate, warp, discolor, or become brittle when exposed to UV or sunlight.


Original or Clone, the Prusa MK3S+ is what we print with. I will continue to post on equipment we use, or review for use.