I think the notion of simultaneous rollouts works for these machines, yeah. Not to mention with the claim in Entertainment Bible 1
that the engineers "completed the MS-R09 Rick Dom in only two months" - that's exactly the span between the July 31 decision to adopt the Rick Dom, and the "late September" production start date in the Master Grade kit manual.
I'm also reminded of one of Kycilia's lines from the beginning of TV episode 24, in which she berates her subordinates about reinforcing M'Quve's forces at Odessa. "And what's more, out of the heavy mobile suits that are being deployed to various units, there should be some that can handle combat on Earth. We should think about transferring those, too... Have the Doms been transferred to the Tri-Stars yet?"
To me, this suggests that Zeon has actually been deploying Doms - the only "heavy mobile suit" then in use - primarily to its space
forces, and Kycilia is having to maneuver to divert them to Earth instead. (The verb used here, 回す, means something like "redirect, transfer, divert.")
The main point of my previous post, really, was to explore the notion of an earlier ground-only "pre-production" run based on the Prototype Dom. This allows us to embrace the oft-cited June rollout date for the Protototype Dom and gives us time for the fairly involved development of the Tropical Test Type prior to Operation Odessa. This also gives us some parameters for the timing of Gouf development, too.
It seems to be very common for the Principality forces to produce a small "pre-production" run prior to full-scale mass production. This was the case with the original MS-05A Zaku I and the YMS-14 Gelgoog, and the MSV Handbook claims that the same thing happened with the Gogg as well, with a lag of two months between the initial production run and the mass produced version.
The key term here, which is variously written as 量産先行 and 先行量産, lends itself to a variety of translations. Literally it's "production-preceding" or "preceding production", but in practice it seems equivalent to a range of terms such as "pre-production," "trial production," and "early production." The machines thus described include the RX-79(G), RGM-79(G), and RGM-79(E) on the Federation side, as well as the YMS-14 Gelgoog and early versions of the Gouf, Dom, and Gogg.
This in turn leads us into the mysteries of the Gouf development process. Given that mass production of the MS-06J Zaku II is current placed at October of U.C. 0078, and various sources say the Prototype Gouf was completed three months later, I think we can make a good case for putting the rollout of the YMS-07
in January. For what it's worth, Hobby Japan's "Gundam Mechanics" card series says that the Prototype Gouf was completed "at the beginning of 0079, just after the outbreak of war."
From here, the Principality goes on to evaluate the rival YMS-07 and YMS-08 designs, merging them into a single machine. The finalized MS-07B
version is said to be based on the YMS-07B
, a "pre/trial/early production" version like those mentioned above, and the MSV series repeatedly claims that Ramba Ral's Gouf is one of these YMS-07B units. In that case, the YMS-07B is evidently as identical to the standard Gouf as the YMS-14 is to the standard Gelgoog.We're also told that, when the MS-06J production lines were eventually switched over to Gouf production, the built-in weapons weren't ready yet and so there was an initial production run of 32 MS-07A
types with no fixed weapons.
According to the MSV books, the first combat deployment of the Gouf came in the third landing operation on March 18, U.C. 0079, a claim that's been widely repeated since then. The Master Grade kit manual, for example, says that "Although a few mobile suits of the MS-07 series were deployed in combat during the third landing operation on March 18, U.C. 0079, full-scale mass production began a few months later."
I don't think it's ever been unambiguously stated, though, exactly which
version of the Gouf was used in this landing operation. According to the MSV series, the MS-07A type was produced during the conversion of the MS-06J production lines, which would presumably represent the start of "full-scale mass production" and lead almost immediately to production of the standard MS-07B type. It's more likely, then, that the type used in the third landing operation was actually the YMS-07B
type - since it's always referred to as a pre-production version, rather than a prototype, it could easily have been produced in similar numbers to the YMS-14 or the mysterious pre-production version of the Dom.
So in timeline form, we'd have something like this...
Mass production of MS-06J Zaku II begins.
Rollout of YMS-07 Prototype Gouf.
Rollout of YMS-07B.
Combat deployment of YMS-07B.
Mass production of MS-07 begins.
Combat deployment of MS-07 begins.
The start date for MS-07 production would probably be around June; this would be "a few months" after the third landing operation, as specified in the MG kit manual. Production begins with the weaponless A type and then shifts quickly to the standard B type. The July date for combat deployment is as per the Newtype/MS Era timeline.
As per my previous post, the timeline for the Dom series might look something like this:
Rollout of YMS-09 Prototype Dom.
Trial production of YMS-09 begins at California Base.
Principality decides to adopt Rick Dom.
Development of YMS-09D Tropical Test Type begins.
U.C. 0079.08 (LATE):
Granada completes conversion of MS-06F production lines.
Development of YMS-09D Tropical Test Type completed.
U.C. 0079.09 (LATE):
Mass production of MS-09 and MS-09R begins at Granada.
Combat deployment of MS-09 and MS-09R begins.
Here, I've labeled the "trial production" version of the Dom as the YMS-09, since it seems to be physically identical to the Prototype Dom. I suppose we could also call this the MS-09A, as opposed to the standard MS-09B version, but as noted above there's some precedent for these YMS types having pretty substantial production runs.