Use same armature with multiple character meshes - Blender

Hello

I made a very basic armature with 3 bones and some basic animations. I would like to be able to use this same armature with different character meshes. When importing the first character into UE4 everything works fine, but when I try to import the second character and associate it with the existing skeleton I get the following error:

FAILED TO MERGE BONES:

This could happen if significant hierarchical change has been made - i.e. inserting bone between nodes Would you like to regenerate Skeleton from this mesh?

WARNING: THIS WILL REQUIRE RECOMPRESS ALL ANIMATION DATA AND POTENTIALLY INVALIDATE

In Blender I created a duplicate of the armature and parented the 2nd character pieces to the bones, without changing the armature itself at all. I don’t know what settings to use when exporting from Blender, I’ve tried ASCII and binary, along with just exporting the mesh without the armature and all sorts of combinations but no matter what I try, I either get the above error, UE4 crashes, or it imports my second character as separate mesh pieces instead of combining them.

Please help! I’m tearing my hair out over this.

Thanks

LB