The Series 5 model (Executive) was the most expensive Raytheon model offered. It retailed for $200.00, which in 1968 dollars, was an expensive purchase ($1488.00 in 2019 dollars). The Series 4 and Series 5 models were not marketed as ‘educational toys’ as the Series 1 – 3A were. These models were geared toward a high school and above demographic given both the cost and the carefully prepared and detailed instruction manual. It has been reported that only 250 units of the Series 5 were manufactured. The walnut hardwood case was unique in the Lectron System product world. Raytheon was the only self-branding company which packaged a Lectron System in this manner.
The Series 5 model was essentially a repackaged Egger 8400 model in terms of content. In fact, the Egger 8400 was sold by Raytheon with the Egger manual replacing the ‘Lectron Laboratory Manual’ until the phase 2 Series models were released. The photograph on the right and below shows such a unit that the Lectron.Info museum was able to acquire.
The Series 5 is my favorite model released by any of the eight or so companies which packaged and sold the Lectron System. The elegant walnut hardwood case with a locking mechanism, the extended experiment manual, and the deluxe base plate all served to put this model at the ‘top of the heap’.
The original Series 5 had a red faux material lining on the plastic block rows and on the inside of the cover. The block rows were made of a thin plastic which became brittle over time and cracked. The red lining also tended to peel off and/or disintegrate as shown in the graphic below.
I had my Series 5 refurbished by removing all the faux lining material and replacing the plastic block rows with oak wood. The side walls and the underside of the cover were painted with a thick red enamel.
Three manuals were shipped with the Series 5: the regular Series 1-3 manual, the supplementary no. 1 manual, and the Lectron Laboratory Manual which featured 57 experiments. This manual was more like the Egger and early Braun 90 experiment manuals with more background information on basic electronics, and more detail and explanation for each experiment. Many of the experiments appearing in the Raytheon laboratory manual were culled from the Egger manual.
Most of the laboratory manual schematics were taken directly from the Egger manual. Note the Egger style battery block with the switch. The experiment #57 shown in the graphic below is actually experiment #90 in the Egger manual.
I have only seen the Series 5 offered twice on eBay since 2012. I purchased one of them! The second unit was offered for some $2000.00 with a reserve price. The auction concluded without a successful bidder and not offered again to my knowledge.