Can a Spell with “Self” Range be Cast by Homunculus Servant?

I’m playing an artificer for the first time and trying to decide whether or not to use an infusion for the homunculus servant. But I’m wondering about the channel magic ability. It says “The homunculus delivers a spell you cast that has a range of touch.” I’d like to know if I can use a spell with a range of self in place of a spell with a range of touch.

As far as I understand it, broader ranges are inclusive of smaller ranges, so if you can cast a spell at sixty feet, you can also cast it at fifteen feet because fifteen feet is closer than sixty feet. And if you can cast it at a distance of touch you can cast it on yourself, because you are closer than the furthest thing you can touch. So I’m really wondering if the same reasoning that applies to the effect of the spell applies to the ability to cast the spell. If you can cast a spell at a range of touch does that imply that you can also cast a spell with a range of self?

Can a Homunculus freely take a bonus action granted to it by a specific rule such as a spell?

After the errata / Tasha’s, we know that you can use your character’s bonus action to command a Homunculus to use a Spell Storing Item. I think we also know that a Homunculus can freely maintain Concentration on a spell cast from the Item, as Concentration requires no action.

Let’s say the Item contains Heat Metal. The Heat Metal spell lets the caster take a bonus action on subsequent turns to re-inflict damage (and disadvantage) on the target.

Can the Homunculus take this bonus action without being commanded by the character?

The Homunculus description in Tasha’s states that

it can move and use its reaction on its own, but the only action it takes on its turn is the Dodge action, unless you take a bonus action on your turn to command it to take another action. That action can be one in its stat block or some other action.

Note that nothing is said about its ability to take a bonus action, probably because the ability to take a bonus action is granted by specific circumstances (e.g., dual wielding light weapons), class features (e.g., Defensive Field), feats (e.g., Crossbow Expert), and spells (e.g., Heat Metal).

Absent anything more specific in the Homunculus description, one could argue that the specific language from Heat Metal lets the Homunculus take a bonus action at will. On the other hand, one could also argue that a "bonus action" is a subcategory of "action" — however, I don’t think such an argument holds water, because while some bonus actions replicate actions (like weapon attacks), others do not (like Defensive Field), suggesting that "bonus action" is a separate category of game mechanic.

Can a Steel Defender or a Alchemical Homunculus use a Spell Storing Item?

I have seen from many different sources the thought process that you can have your Alchemical Homunculus or your Steel Defender use your spell storing item. This would let them take up concentration for an additional spell.

However the more I look into it the less I think you can. I wanted to get clarification from you folks.

Spell Storing item:

While holding the object, a creature can take an action to produce the spell’s effect from it, using your spellcasting ability modifier. If the spell requires concentration, the creature must concentrate.

Alchemical Homunculus:

In combat, the homunculus shares your initiative count, but it takes its turn immediately after yours. It can move and use its reaction on its own, but the only action it takes on its turn is the Dodge action, unless you take a bonus action on your turn to command it to take the action in its stat block or the Dash, Disengage, Help, Hide, or Search action.

Steel Defender:

In combat, the steel defender shares your initiative count, but it takes its turn immediately after yours. It can move and use its reaction on its own, but the only action it takes on its turn is the Dodge action, unless you take a bonus action on your turn to command it to take one of the actions in its stat block or the Dash, Disengage, Help, Hide, or Search action.

I added emphasis on only. This completely negates the ability to use the Spell Storing Item in combat doesn’t it?

Homunculus Servant using magical items

I’m playing an artificer that recently took the infusion for a Homunculus Servant. The party has an extra animated shield. I -think- the following is acceptable, but I wanted to see if I got it wrong anywhere.

  • Homunculus is considered a creature and thus has three attunement slots it can use. Furthermore being intelligent it could actually do so if directed.

  • Using magical tinkering, I could give it a small item that when tapped would speak the animated shield’s ‘activation’ word.

  • The Homunculus could, therefore, with proper instruction, actively use an Animated shield during combat?

Right? Am I missing anything? That’s all completely legal without bending any rules? Also, we’re using the flanking rules, it should qualify as a threat to be able to flank things right? It has its own attack.

Can my homunculus be turned against me?

The Monster Manual describes a humunculus on p188.

A homunculus is a construct that acts as an extension of its creator, with the two sharing thoughts, senses, and language through a mystical bond.

If I were to find a way to create one, could it be turned against me?

Fortunately it is immune to the charmed condition, which eliminates many threats. But is there some way control of the homunculus could be seized by someone else, and it could be caused to act in a way contrary to the control normally exerted by its creator?

What reactions are available to an artificer’s homunculus servant?

The description of the artificer’s homunculus servant states:

In combat, the homunculus shares your initiative count, but it takes its turn immediately after yours. It can move and use its reaction on its own, but the only action it takes on its turn is the Dodge action, unless you take a bonus action on your turn to command it to take the action in its stat block or the Dash, Disengage, Help, Hide, or Search action.

The homunculus has a limited number of action options in combat, and most require the artificer to use their bonus action on their own turn. This (closed) question lists the reactions that are generally available in the game, but the homunculus can’t have feats, use the Ready action, or take an Opportunity Attack.

Yet the rules specifically go out of their way to mention that the homunculus can “use its reaction on its own”.

Question: what reactions can it use?

Can an artificer heal a homunculus servant at range?

In the official version of artificer, the ability to create a homunculus servant is gained at 6th level. Among its other abilities, the homunculus can:

Channel Magic The homunculus delivers a spell you cast that has a range of touch. The homunculus must be within 120 feet of you.

Further:

The homunculus regains 2d6 hit points if the mending spell is cast on it

Mending has a range of touch. Is there any reason an artificer cannot use the spell to repair his homunculus servant so long as it is within 120 feet?

Homunculus: worth its own weight?

I started a new campaign and the DM started me with an egg, which I just discovered contains a homunculus. (egg, whatever). I looked up its stats and it seems…awful. The create homunculus spell from XGtE is 6th-level, while the find familiar spell is 1st-level. Is there something I’m missing here? What makes the homunculus 5 spell levels better than other familiars?