Are you sure you have the name of the product right? We've sold sanding sealer for many years, by many different manufacturers. They all are used as an inexpencive "prime" coat under varnish, though some have used it as finish coat as well. The product called "Sand Sealer" that I'm familliar with, if applied to wood of any type, would prevent the stain from "taking" to the wood at all. The stain would just lie on the surface like a glazing liquid.
Years ago, craftsmen would make their own stain sealers by mixing varnish or sanding sealer with mineral spirits at a ratio of 70:1. This is the exact same thing as McCluskey's "Stain Controler" or Minwax's "Stain Sealer", each manufacturer has their own version of the same thing.
Sandpaper.....We had a project years ago where the woman did her own wood finishing. She sanded the pine trim with 220 grit paper and then complained that the stain we sold her wouldn't stain the wood. She had closed the pores to the point that the stain wouldn't take. She ended up replacing all her trim.
I have used latex and water borne clear finishes of most types and I always return to the oil ones. Sure, they dry fast, but fast isn't always better. They're just like the difference between latex and oil paints, each has it's ups and downs. Dust really isn't as much a problem if you have control of the enviroment your working in, though that can be difficult on a construcion project. I will give you the point on dry time though, and odor too!
No offence meant, there are as many ways to skin cats as there are people who skin them!