Although still unfinished, this article is being posted because we felt is still contains very useful information. This article is still considered a draft, but hopefully you can get some good info from it until we have time to boil it down and finish. – EWC
The short “to do” for maintaining a solid-body dummy: First, we recommend adding 3-4 layers of polyurethane to the new dummy (inside and out). This makes it harder for moisture to get in and out. (wax, oil, and grease, are all okay alternatives). Second, buy a hygrometer and keep the humidity levels over 45% in the room that the dummy is in and do NOT let the humidity level in that room change much. Keep the dummy out of drafts (esp from windows or heating vents) or direct sunlight and away from heaters or air conditioners (blowing air dries the wood out fast). It is ideal to keep the dummy in 50-60% humidity (i.e. normal humidity), but know that is not always possible. If you start seeing checking in your dummy you need to try to stop the moisture from leaving the dummy so quickly 1) reduce temperature if possible 2) seal the dummy and cracks the grease or oils, 2-part epoxy glue 3) raise the humidity in the room ASAP 4) get the dummy out of a draft (cover it). If left unattended the dummy will end up cracking.
[11 May 2016] – Quick note: Here is a report a customer sent us by Dian-Qing Yang and Danny Normand on the best-practices-to-avoid-hardwood-checking-part-I. It might be worth a read if you find this interesting – it covers a lot of the same info we have below from a more scientific background.
Now for more details: