Fri, 23 Jun 2000 21:09:52 -0400 (EDT)

On Sat, 24 Jun 2000, Tomonaga wrote:
> Thanks for clearing that up with great pics Core.
> Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find any sensible official specs
> for the Gau and I'm beginning to think that a lot of the other
> dimensions for MAs and ships might be a little suspect as well. I'm
> planning to at least make MSiA scale 'blue prints' for these so any
> other irregularities will show up.

Aiya! Big project! Even if it's just blueprints. Will you do Samson and
Gallop at some point? I would really really love to get some good
blueprints of those two. Nightingale said MSiA is "approximately" 1/160
to 1/170, have you chosen a precise scale for MSiA?

> I mentioned to Nightingale about a couple of other size
> inconsistencies I found comparing specs from Mecha Domain and books
> and how there seems to have been a general downsizing over the years.
> In particular the Zeong (listed at > In particular the Zeong (listed at 17.3m@MD&recent books cf old book
> circa 1981 23m) and the BigZam (listed at > circa 1981 23m) and the BigZam (listed at 59.6m@MD&recent books cf old
> spec 80m). It has always been my understanding that the legless Zeong
> was tall as or taller than the Gundam as indicated by the old specs -
> I haven't checked the anime footage yet but the Zeong's size relative
> to Gundam, and the BigZam relative to Gundam should clear things up.
> (I think the BigZam @60m is definitely way too small relative to
> Gundam and the MSiA BigZam is closer to the 80m size than 60m)

I think the 1981 Zeong model is slightly shorter than the 1/144 Gundam,
leaning towards the "modern" figure. I was actually disappointed about
that. I've also the impression that Zeong should be big. Also supported
by Mark Simmon's recent discussion that early psycommu systems are huge.

Unfortunately, I put down the Bigzam model after only a couple steps, so
it's hard to measure the size, but a rough guess is about 12cm or 66m,
also leaning towards the "modern" figure. In this case, 60m vs. 80m is
not a big deal, I can't say I have a preference. The acid test is to see
if you can fit the Corebooster or G-Armor into Bigzam's loins.

> I'm beginning to have little faith in the official dimensions now and am

Hear hear!

> looking to the anime footage for guidance ,but there are problems there as
> well as shown by the Gau/Komusai/MS scenes. But since my intention is to
> recreate memorable scenes, this is the only way to go methinks. I might have
> to make two ends for the Gau - the front end that's in scale with the Zakus
> and the back end in scale with the Komusai. Man, you can just about fit a

Ok, we both agree "history" needs to be revised. I agree generally we
should weight video evidence over printed specs. But sometimes video
evidence is self-conflicting. In this case, I oppose changing the
proportions of Gau. Gau as it's proportioned now is too deeply imprinted
in my memory. My suggestion is to revise the scene of Char's Komusai
landing INSIDE Garma's Gau. That scene is supposed to dramatize the
mobility of Zeons and show off Char as a daredevil pilot, but it doesn't
really serve any plot development. You can rewrite that scene as Char
landing in Garma's base and then both takes off in the Gau to persue White
Base and it won't loose much any steam.

Either that, or you have to scale up Gau as a whole, then it's too big to
be holding only 3 MS, or you have to scale down Komusai, then it's too
small to hold 1-4 MS. Another approach is to revise that scene, so
Komusai doesn't land inside Gau, but instead grapple a cable and just
hangs under Gau. Pretty ridiculous, but Titans did that with Psycho
Gundam. Hey!!! Was Psycho Gundam hanging under a Gau? If so, it sets
another upper limit on Gau's size: can't fit a Psycho Gundam inside.

The last picture in this page from 08MST,
iirc, is taken inside a Gau. So the cargo bay of the Gau must be wide
enough for a Kyui, I don't know if this offer any additional information.

> whole Musai in the back of that Gau ! : ) Makes you wonder why the Gau is
> only said to carry three MS! this leads me to the Musai's MS
> complement...maybe I'll have to draw up the plans for a MSiA scale... ; - )

You just need a piece of paper 1.4m long.

> I'll mention another glitch, I've already told Nightingale about this when I
> was telling him that I was having problems deciding how to make the MS entry
> door. See the picture of the Char's Zaku exiting the Komusai - In this scene
> there are two separate Zaku size doors. These are sliding doors that retract
> upwards. But in the scene in episode 5 where Char's Zaku enters the Komusai
> during atmospheric re-entry, there is only one large door that swings
> outwards! When you consider that a GP02 from 0083 is supposed to fit in
> through a door (I don't think this was shown??)on the Komusai, the one large
> door might be more credible.

Ah! Anyone who knows a teeny bit of engineering, architecture or interior
designs would spot all the nonsensical door designs on many ships and even
on Colonies. It's not something animators pay attention to. Anyway, I
will just point out that doors on ships shouldn't swing inwards (if that's
what you mean by "sliding doors that retract upwards". Swinging doors
takes up valuable volume, and you don't want to take up INTERNAL volume.

> Using the dimensions from Mecha Domain, the Komusai that I ended up with
> relative to MSiA Char's zaku is closer to the anime scene you captured albeit
> slighlty shorter in length and more chunky than the model kit proportions.
> There seems to be a general consensus that the Komusai can only fit two MS,
> but with the model I created and the captured scene, there is plenty of room
> to fit four MS easily. This would have enabled Char and all of his three
> wingmen to retreat into the Komusai had they not all been killed - which is a
> nice thing, I thought. : )

It sure is... What was the original mission plan? I clearly remember
planned mission length was 4 minutes, but I don't remember if Char told
them to return to Musai or dock with the descending Komusai. There were
no evidence of anyone on Char's team committing to a kamakaze mission.
But damnit if Komusai holds 4 MS, how many are supposed to fit in the
whole Musai? Wasn't it "official" that a regular Musai holds 3 MS and
Char's Musai was modified to hold 4?
I don't think there is room for 4 MS, unless you assume Komusai is mostly
empty space.

Another badly scaled scene.

> Here's a funny mistake, totally unrelated to any of the above, that I noticed
> while re-watching the Komusai episodes but unfortunately you won't be able to
> really show how funny it is with screenshots alone.
> Garma sends his first attack on the White Base with a squadron of Dopps.
> Amuro and Hayato deploy in the GunTank. When they realise that there is also
> a ground attack by a Mazera Attack force they quickly retreat back to the
> White Base so Amuro can go out in the Gundam. They are in obvious hurry for
> Amuro to switch MS. You see the GunTank reverse into the White Base MS
> hangar area and then you see Amuro jumping out of the cockpit, run across the
> gangplank and run through the corridor and jump into the Gundam cockpit.
> It all seems reasonable had Amuro not been shown jumping out of the Gundam
> cockpit to begin with!! When you think about it this is deep, really deep!
> very metaphysical ; - )

LOL! The evil stock footage strikes again! If you keep this up, we will
have enough material to make a page of goofs and discontinuity.

> Anyway thank you very much for the scans of the MAs and for including the
> ruler. It is a great help. (I can see that the Elmeth relative to MS is
> already a problem in regard to official specs and anime scenes.)

But the Elmeth model is badly proportioned. The anime shows the wingspan
to be narrower and also with a much greater swept angle. You can see from
my scan the nose and the wings almost form a equilateral triangle. Also
other proportions are off, the animated (and linearts) Elmeth is
proportioned like an SUV, the Elmeth model is proportioned like an
original VW Bettle. Another example of bad model size is the MG Gelgoog
compared to MG Gundam.

You have the Roman Album right? There are several pre-production rough
sketches by Tomino. I suspect the process was something like Tomino has
in mind a certain visual composition of key scenes (such as the part when
Elmeth, Gelgoog, G-Fighter and Gundam all came together just before
Lalah's *****, or the scene when G-Armor attacked Bigzam). Sizes of the
MA's and ships were roughly defined by these visual compositions. Later,
numbers were tagged on by book writers. BUT I am fairly convinced that
Tomino and Okawara never personally checked or approved most of these
numbers except for the major MS such as Gundam and Zaku. Model scuptors
are yet a different department, and I think often they are no wiser than
you or I when it comes to the exact dimensions of the odd MAs and ships.

Personally I think both models and printed specs should be considered
guestimations of the truth. And we've both seen how some animated scenes
are equally unreliable. I think the only reliable source should be these
preproduction sketches, because they represent what Tomino and Okawara
wanted to achieve visually. Of course being rough sketches, you can't
really put a ruler on them and "measure the truth". The numerical truth,
in a very oriental way, simply doesn't exist. What's worse, these
sketches are very hard to find.

PS: what do I have to do to bribe you into making (and sharing :) a
blueprint of Samson? And what's the name of the truck transporting Gundam
in Ep. 1? Talk about memorable scene, Gundam standing up from that truck
was the title scene ("Stand Up, Gundam!") of the first episode of the
whole Goddam franchise, and I don't even know the name of the truck!
Anyway, aren't you a little tempted to recreate that scene?

Name: Core
Patient ID: #1
Condition: Critical

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