Anyone mortise their own reel seat spacers?

#1
I purchased an Echo 2 fly rod a few months ago. It has a mortised reel seat. I really like the way the spacer holds the reel firmly in place and doesn't allow for any lateral play. Do any of you folks have a good technique for making mortised reel seats of this type? I have a full woodworking shop with obsessive woodworking geek type tools aplenty. I believe that making a jig with my router table and a straight bit would do the job. I would also think that the router could cause catastrohic failure and tear the spacer to shreds if there is any chatter. Just thinking out loud here....Is the answer to center bore the spacer and insert a mandrel. Then use the router to mortise the spacer on a rotating jig prior to turning. Then turn the spacer last. It seems to work best in my mind that way. I have only turned basic round spacers thus far.- What have you guys seen that works?
 
#4
I created a jig that has a 3/8" bolt as a mandrel to slide the insert onto. Here are a few tips:
1. The best way to cut mortises is WITH the turn of the router bit, not against. This prevents tear-out. You aren't cutting that much material anyway.
2. The seat blank must not move on the mandrel. If it can slide along the bolt it can turn on the bolt too (chalk this one up to ugly experience!).
If my blank is loose on the bolt I just stick a piece of masking tape on the bolt to tighten it up.
3. Make sure you get your depth of cut figured out exactly before you cut. It is really difficult to realign the reel seat blank to the bit once you take it off of the jig to check the fit.