One question I have always had is should I continue to tilt the MT when the flow is down to a slow trickle so that I can get all of the final drips out or am I just waisting my time with that since it doesn't bring my volume up by much?
Yes, you should. I do it because of my frugal nature. "Waste not, want not."
It may not be efficient in terms of time spent, though.
I haven't done the math to determine how much fermentable sugar is in one or two gallons of 1.016 last runnings (if fly sparging) or in one or two gallons of 1.024 last runnings (if batch sparging).
I typically brew 10 gallon batches.
I mash and batch/fly sparge with the same 10 Gallon [orange
] Igloo cooler.
I usually do 2 or 3 batch sparges to get a lot of volume quickly into the boil kettle, and then do a fly sparge with the remaining sparge water while the kettle is bringing the wort to a boil. I only mildly rake the upper 1/2 of the grain bed with my stirring spoon when fly sparging to avoid having to vorlauf again.
I always take the extra time to tip and drain the fluid (takes as long as 10-15 minutes. It's amazing how much the grain bed compacts and shrinks as the final runnings are pulled off. We're talking a good gallon or two of wort. I always make sure it remains above 1.008-1.016 (brix 2-4, if using the refractometer), in order to avoid astringency issues.