Help with Animation workflow

I’ve been working with the Unreal engine for about 2 months. 4.25.3 I’m still really new. In that time I’ve learned a bit about everything.
I want to create a factory type machine in Blender and animate it in UE4.

This can be as simple as a large square machine with a gear on the side and a piston on the top. (Simple, yes, but it makes the point).

My question, is what workflow is the norm?
Do I want to add bones in Blender then animate it, then bring it into UE4 as a skeletal mesh?

Or, just bring in each part and use a blueprint with a Time line to make the parts move? The latter I’ve had luck with.

I’ve watched tutorials on Montage, animation blueprints, character animations and blending but nothing seems to fit. It’s not a character that needs to blend animations.

I did a simple light switch tutorial using Blender’s Action editor, found in the dope sheet window.
But I had issues starting and stopping the animation inside of UE4. Starting was easy, stopping was a kludge. (I used start animation with no animation selected. This seemed like not the way to do it.)

I read Sequencer is new, matinee is old. Sequencer replaced matinee, but I think these are after animation, yes?

Thanks, for any and all help pointing me in the right direction.

It’s a very wide subject that many will approach entirely different.

What is the purpose of said machine?
Cinematic? - that’s one pathway.
Game? That’s a different pathway.
to learn? probably both pathways.