Lego has a lot to answer for.
For one, it could be argued that it contributed to the demise of Meccano, the engineering building toy which sparked an interest in engines and machines among many a youngster.
Technical Lego wasn't really quite the same.
Or maybe it is down to the more complicated cars with their solid state and sealed components who are to blame for a dearth of people entering the sector.
Tinkering around with their dad's motor on a Saturday was another way into the wide world of engineering, which has now disappeared together.
Coupled with the demise of traditional manufacturers like Eliza Tinsley and the threat to jobs at Ryton, it is hardly surprising at all youngsters don't want to be engineers.
In these dark days, engineering needs you, yes, you to give a helping hand.
Which is where the Moving Forward initiative comes in.
The scheme is currently setting up a virtual campus with gigantic engines at the Engineering Employers Federation training centre in Tyseley and a locomotive at the Tyseley Locoworks.
But it is also aiming to raise £2 million in the next few months to set up a new, hanger type building , which will include a variety of small and large machines for study.
Moving Forward - so called because of its links to the transport manufacturers which have dominated the Midlands industrial landscape and Birmingham's Forward motto - is now in discussion with various parties to raise funds.
Eventually, it wants to get its own, dedicated home up and running by 2008 in time for the planned A-levels in engineering.
The organisation is aiming for sponsorship from strategic partnerships, everyone from the smallest of the SMEs to the larger companies.
Ian Pritchard, project manager of the scheme, said: "We are looking for an initial £2 million in sponsorship.
"We want to demonstrate Birmingham's industrial and manufacturing community has that level of commitment to its future and plugging the skills gap. We will be banging on doors to bring this idea into reality.
"We want to introduce the delights of going into manufacturing to a new generation of younger people."
There is certainly a need for it, with skills gaps appearing in many industries as older, qualified professionals inevitably retire.
There is also a need to upgrade the existing skills people have as Britain moves towards more top end, high quality, value added areas.
As Mr Pritchard put it: "We need to bring back the wow factor. There is something definitely wow about 85 tons of heavy metal in the form of a locomotive."
Mr Pritchard said there would be no minimum contribution to the effort, with small firms able to offer services in kind for the setting up of the project which has been called the Engine Room.
Everyone should take part; after all without the manufacturers generating the wealth in many cases there would be less need for the professional services and everyone else who depends on it.