I've been told that these are still available, but I have yet to see a new one anywhere since I decided to buy a CCW a year ago. As a matter of fact, I haven't seen hardly any 642's with the lock at my LGS either. Bud's Guns has been sold out of them every time I check.
This is the gun I originally wanted but couldn't find when I was ready to buy, so after some research I decided on a LCR .38spl instead. I don't regret that decision, as the LCR has really grown on me, even though I was highly upset at first once I realized that it too had a cylinder lock under the grip.
My fault, I should have done my homework.
Still, I'd like to get the popular little 642 anyway. It never hurts to have two CCW snubbies, if one get stolen, confiscated, in the shop, etc. At this point I'll take the version with the stupid cylinder lock, but does anyone know if they will be producing more without them?