Production, sustainment and repair technologies for light alloy components in the defence applications account for a significant proportion of Defence Materials Technology Centre (DMTC) activities. Key challenges in this regard include the affordable manufacture and repair & sustainment of Titanium components for new and legacy platforms. The DMTC research program portfolio incorporates collaborative technology development activities between industry and the research sector within a framework of a partnership model that includes input from the Defence customer on likely procurement opportunities for industry, and longer term strategic requirements of Defence. The technological focus is particularly on the benchmarking of strategies, technologies and manufacturing techniques associated with the manufacture of aerospace components via high speed machining. Developing affordable, cost-effective and best of breed machining processes and practices among a broad range of Australian manufacturing organisations is a key goal of the DMTC. This paper describes an initiative of the DMTC focused on developing and optimising engineering capability in metals manufacturing for aerospace applications. Data generated from a range of participating sources conducting machining trials of identical titanium and stainless steel components is compared and contrasted in the context of best practice development.