distance - rod to tensioning device
When wrapping rods by hand, I liked 'em fairly close together (about "fly tying distance") so I could make sure wraps were snug against each other. It saved pushing them snug both during and after wrapping.
Another "trick" I used was to use a thin strip of masking tape to hold them in position so I would not have to worry about "repositioning" them, removing it just prior to making the final wraps over that position. (I always lightly deburred the edges of the guides, too, beforehand with a little emery paper - I always felt that if there were any burrs or sharp corners on the edge of the guide it could cut into the thread during flexing.)