Edwin Claire Foringer Jr., 75, founder and former head of a firm that designed and built equipment used to conduct biological experiments, died Wednesday at the Rockville Nursing Home following a heart attack.

Mr. Foringer was born in Gibsonburg, Ohio, and grew up in Ohio and Michigan. He earned a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering at Kalamazoo College inKalamazoo, Mich. He then moved to Chicago, where he worked for the Illinois Bell Telephone Company.

In the late 1930s, he moved to the Washington area and operated a metal job shop. In 1954, he founded a firm called Life Sciences. A year later, this became Foringer & Company, with offices in Rockville.

The company specialized inthe design and construction of experimental environments for laboratory animals. It also designed and made equipment to record the results of experiments involving animals. The Foringer company designed the restraining and measuring equipment used on "Ham," a chimpanzee who made a flight in a capsule in the Mercury space flight program.

Mr. Foringer retired in 1968 for reasons of health and sold his business in the following year. He maintained his own residence in Rockville until moving to the Rockville Nursing Home in 1977.

His wife, Lois H. Foringer, died in 1975. He leaves no immediate survivors.