I'm about a year into learning to turn on an inexpensive mini-lathe. I mostly turn small lidded boxes or bowls. With both boxes and bowls, I like them big, so I'm often within an inch or two of the width capacity of the lathe.
I turn mostly walnut or spalted maple, though I'm not sure if that makes a difference.
The machine is a great starter lathe, but because it is a pain to change speeds, I end up using the slowest speed almost all the time.
My question is, am I missing something when I go from roughing all the way to final sanding/polish using only the slowest speed?
The main problems I notice in my finished pieces are tear-out that leaves a rough feel on two sides of the piece, no matter how long or attentively I work my way up the grits (I start at 80 and go all the way up to 800 most of the time).
I guess my pieces take longer than the folks I admire on Youtube, but I can't tell if that is due to the slow speed, my hesitation, my tools, or the videos' editing...or a combination of all three.
It would be really helpful to hear the ways you recognize while you're working that you can or should increase the speed.
Thanks in advance!