Not much I can say about ease of use but I can say... "Don't Buy New." eBay is the ONLY way to go. Look up Surplus Supply stores and keep "lurking" for as long as it takes. I had to wait for over three months but $499...
instead of $1,100, for an UNUSED Cyclone,
was worth it IMHO.
IMHO look for a "clam-shell" + side-door... and at least 40-48" x 48."
Cyclone Sandblast Cabinet & Dust Collector
............ New = $1,100 US... SALE = $499 US
BTW the advice above about buying a "Pressure" unit instead of "Syphon-type" is great too.
Yup... I got an UNUSED
Maxus 125 lb. Pressure blaster on eBay for less than 1/3 retail too ($125.)
NOTHING beats a good eBay deal IMHO.
Then you can use the pressure pot with the cabinet instead of just having slower, less powerful syphon-feed... and the pressure-pot is MOBILE for bigger jobs as well. IMHO ADD extra back walls to the cabinet if you're unsure of gauge thickness and strength for some media like steel shot (maybe for Shot-peening OEM con-rods?)