metal lathes have more and slower speeds. they use tooling for cutting
metal, so everything has to be a lot stouter and heavier. the metal
cutting tooling is held within the lathe, where wood lathe tools are
held in the hand. metal lathes are designed for work to a much higher
tolerance than wood lathes, so they are heavier and more expensive.
metal lathes make very nice wood lathes, though with a lousy diameter
to dollar return. A stout wood lathe can be used for metal spinning,
and some try to do more conventional metal cutting on wood lathes, but
it isn't a very good idea.
Not much. I've used both. How the material is held is different.
And, more importantly, wood cutting machines rotate much faster than
metal cutting machines. My drill press is used for both metal and
wood, although there are bits that should only be used for wood. A
metal lathe may use a coolant. The softer the material, the faster
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