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Duplicate Custom Object

I have a custom object with many fields.  I need to make a second custom object which is almost identical.  Is there some easy way to do this so that I don't have to use the web interface to add each field manually?
Using the command-line Migration Tool or the Eclipse-based IDE, you can retrieve your custom object as a metadata XML file, copy it to a new file and change its name/other content, and deploy it as a new custom object.
Why do you need to create an almost clone of the original custom object?  Will multiple record types/page layouts make your life any easier (Enterprise or above)?