Now days it is very easy to clone an Oracle Home, where in the old days a lot of additional steps were required as the RDBMS instance was part of the Oracle home. My advise is to make use of the utility server which is hosting a dedicate non-used ORACLE HOME. This home can be used as golden image.
Perform software only install is always so easy. And can be reused like now. Similar steps can be accomplished using Enterprise Manager 12c Cloud Control, but I still believe the command line part are much easier and more time saving.
a) Make sure no process is using the Oracle home you want to clone.
b) Create a zip or tar file of the ORACLE_HOME.
c) Copy the file to the server where you require the new home and extract the tar of zip file
tar -cvf rdbms12c_dbhome_1.tar /u01/app/oracle/product/12.1.0/dbhome_1 zip -r rdbms12c_dbhome_1.zip /u01/app/oracle/product/12.1.0/dbhome_1 Make sure you only define the dbhome_N location.
d) Copy the file to the server where you require the new home and extract the tar of zip file
e) Now it is time to execute the clone perl script, which can be found in $ORACLE_HOME/clone/bin/
$ORACLE_HOME/perl/bin/perl $ORACLE_HOME/clone/bin/clone.pl ORACLE_BASE="/u01/app/oracle/" ORACLE_HOME="/u01/app/oracle/product/12.1.0/dbhome_1" OSDBA_GROUP=dba -defaultHomeName
f) Run as root user, the script reported in step 4.
The clone is performed, in addition you can check if no files exists in the dbs directory or network/admin. Next step is to create a listener and create the database.
If you need to apply patches in the future you use the initial zip file, unzip to a new Oracle home, clone it, apply the patches, zip it an distributed it to all your required systems. Very easy!
Below the output of the above steps: