In 1933 Cannon entered aerospace business by developing a modified F connector – now called the AF connector – for the Douglas’ DC-1 transport plane. It was the first connector built specifically for aircraft, and its innovative design helped Douglas move quickly to build subsequent DC models that would make aviation history.
When the DC-2 was introduced in 1934, it showed that passenger air travel could be comfortable, safe and reliable. One year later the larger DC-3 popularized air travel in United States by enabling transcontinental flights with only a few refueling stops. The AF connectors were onboard all of these revolutionary DC models.
From that point on Cannon Electric grew as the aircraft industry grew. Cannon then developed the lightweight K-line connector, which – much like today – appealed to commercial and military aircraft manufacturers who were looking for ways to reduce the weight of their planes to accommodate more passengers and armaments.
Other innovations followed, and by the mid-1930’s, the once small company began volume production of multi-contact electrical connectors. By the end of 1939, every aircraft manufacturer in the United States was using Cannon connectors.